L.A. Noire Review

It’s rough business, but someone has got to do it.

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I’m talking about L.A. Noire, the mysterious new title from Rockstar Games, developed by Team Bandi. And let me tell you, they’ve done a bang-up job.

Dropped right into the thick of policework in post-world-war-II Los Angeles, rookie officer Cole Phelps has just come home from his service in the war. The story is thick and deep and weaves throught the submissions seamlessly. Like most Rockstar games in the past, story is everything here.

The game mechanics are awesome too. Have time to develop solid gameplay over the GTA titles it translates perfectly to L.A. Noire. Driving is very fun, although the ability to car-jack or run people over is absent (it IS a cop game now, don’t forget) and the driving feels very smooth. The city is massive and extremely detailed with places like shops and buildings to enter and talk to people. The game centers not around gun play (although it is there too!) but around examining crime scenes, collecting evidence and interviewing suspects and witnesses. While this may sound dull, it most definitely is not. Several times I caught myself extremely involved with the the interview process and racking my brain for the details, trying to make the perp talk and give me what I needed for a conviction.

L.A. Noire is very liniar, which if you’ve played GTA games in the past is quite different, but not a bad thing. However, once a mission is completed you can return to the main menu and replay that mission, looking for perfection. By collecting all the evidence, interviewing the people correctly and doing as little damage to the city and it’s people in the process, you can earn up to 5 stars on the mission performance reviews. I’ve only earned 4 star reviews so far, but my second playthrough should net some better results on the cases.

I recommend you check the game out. Keep in mind this game is rated M for a reason. Language, violence and drug use runs throughout the game, but this is the seedy underbelly of L.A. we’re talking about here! Get out there and catch some crooks.

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