The somber melody of the jazz quartet danced with the mind of the troubled detective, his eyes diverting to the two suspicious men arguing in the corner of the club. They got up from their table and walked through the exit next to the stage, the detective not far behind. The tobacco haze gave way to rising clouds of steam outside. At the end of the alley were the two men, nothing but silhouettes in the poor lighting. A loud bang suddenly pierced the air followed by the violent slump of one of the dark figures. “LAPD, stop!” ordered the detective but the remaining silhouette vanished into the wilderness of shadows.
, as the name clearly states, is a video game built on the tropes of one of the greatest periods of American cinema: film noir. Developed by the now defunct Australian developer Team Bondi and published by Rockstar Games, this title has been out on consoles for a full six months before finally making its way to the PC. This “Complete Edition” of the game features improved graphics, keyboard/mouse controls, and every bit of previously-released DLC for free. But was it truly worth the wait? Read on and find out!
In this open-world sleuthing game, you assume the role of Cole Phelps, a U.S. Marine coming home from World War II to become an officer in the Los Angeles Police Department. As you rise through the ranks from beat cop to senior detective, you will solve some of the city’s most harrowing crimes, ranging from traffic-related incidents and arson all the way up to homicide and drug trafficking. Despite there being several shootouts, car and foot chases, and hand-to-hand brawling, gameplay in L.A. Noire revolves mostly around finding evidence at the scene of the crime and interrogating witnesses and suspects.
It must be immediately noted that this is not a sandbox game like Grand Theft Auto
, nor is it the cop version of Mafia II
. LAN is, instead, somewhat of a modernized open-world adventure game, not very dissimilar from the point-and-click titles of old. You will be furiously clicking at everything around you to find objects you can interact with, patiently watching many cinematics, and intensely talking with NPCs to try and figure out their angle. There’s also a bit of light puzzle solving, critical thinking, and even some memorization, so this game may not appeal to everyone.
Even if that doesn’t sound like your cup of tea, you should definitely try it out if you ever get the chance. The amount of work put into the game as a whole merits consideration by all who would call themselves a gamer. L.A. Noire
features over twenty hours’ worth of voice work and physical, motion-captured performances by real Hollywood actors. Its revolutionary use of MotionScan technology -- involving 32 cameras that analyze facial expressions from every angle and translate them for use in-game -- provides an entirely new dynamic that propels NPC interaction right through the uncanny valley and into the realm of life-like awesomeness.