The overall rating of a review is different from a simple average of all individual ratings.
Share this review on
L.A Noire was hyped for weeks before it was released and it can be hard for any media to live up to that. In this case, it was impossible as L.A Noire genuinely wasn't as good as it seemed it was going to be.
Graphics: The most interesting aspect of the game appeared to be its MotionScan technology, providing the best facial movements and the most realistic cut scenes seen in almost any game. You don't quite realise how unrealistic earlier graphics looked until you see the minute muscle movements and life-like dynamics of L.A Noire. Unfortunately, you don't get much of a variety of actions to perform with this new technology, most levels involve driving somewhere, searching for clues, climbing a drain-pipe, a mediocre shoot-out and then driving back to the station. Also, some textures and objects look slightly blocky and out of place with the realistic environment, but that's forgivable. 9/10 Gameplay: The clue searching parts are interesting and do require some deductive reasoning, and you're left more to your own devices than in other games which would likely instruct you too: 'Look at car for clues' to fill some space before the bank robbery set piece. But inspecting evidence and checking your notebook for links (the main convention of the game) just doesn't hold the whole game up by itself. The shooting dynamics can be recognised as Rockstar: walls for cover and a white dot for aiming, but L.A Noire's action sequences seem to have been taken back to the good ol' days of GTA: Vice City. Except, it looks pretty crappy on a next-gen console with graphics easily as good as anything else on PS3. The driving is pretty abysmal also; crashes are unimpressive, nothing of any interest happens out on the street and all of the driving parts just seem irrelevant and needless, with nothing chucked in to make it remotely unique, unlike how Rockstar usually do things. 6/10 Story: The story is pretty interesting, especially tracking a serial killer around half way through the game, but it doesn't feel very 'noir'-ish at all. Everything is too....bright. They got the 1940's feel pretty good, with classic cars, fedora hats, jazz clubs, WW2 weaponry, feeble woman and egotistical swinging dicks with badges. But the noir aspect was missing from the story and it just didn't feel anything like Se7en or even L.A Confidential. However, this is a lot of great dialogue in the game, especially with Cole Phelp's various partners, exploring all forms of reactionary old school police mindsets, as well as great dialogue with criminals and politicians, which adds a layer to the story. 7/10
Sound: I forget to mention the one good aspect of driving, that's the radio. It's 40's swing, blues and jazz all the way, although they only have about 8 songs so it gets pretty repetitive. The voice acting is realistic; although probably not as noticeable as the computer-generated faces the voices belong to. But a lot of the sounds in this game get boring, same songs, same sfx, same voices, which would be less noticeable in a game with more character and variety. Oh, and the siren sounds really f**king horrible. 6/10