Review by VixenofVenus

Reviewed: 05/20/11

Greatest Detective Game Ever

In the history of video games, there are always games that stand out for breaking barriers, making new strides towards realism, and for going in a new direction. L.A. Noire is one of those games. It's not going to change the world, but the game and the new technology Team Bondi have created WILL change the video game industry, possibly in ways that the creators never imagined.

Already gamers and industry are saying Rockstar got behind this game to gain access to the Depth Analysis's new MotionScan technology they developed for the video game and film industry. Speculation and rumor is, Rockstar plans to use the technology in their next property, probably a Red Dead or Grand Theft Auto sequel.

While the realistic faces, body movements, and immersion in the world is wonderful, what really makes the game fairly unique is the detective gameplay. While there have been other games where you take on the role of a cop, a private investigator, or some kind of investigator, never before has a major release made that the focus of the majority of gameplay. Most of this game is what a police detective would refer to as "legwork." It starts at the crime scene and continues from location to location, finding evidence, questioning those involved, until you narrow things down to a suspect or two and finally question them.

Of course, this game is not reality, as Cole Phelps, the cop-crusader you take control of, has a career filled with car chases, shootouts, police corruption, and cases that make headlines. This game puts you in the thick of Los Angeles of the late 1940s, after the famous Black Dalia murder. But not the Los Angeles of reality, the one created though hundreds of noir crime novels and films.

L.A. Noire puts you in the shoes of a cop out to prove himself, in a city seething with alcoholism, violence, sex, drugs, and murder. And it's up to you to solve those crimes as best you can. Which is yet something else which makes L.A. Noire different -- you don't always get things right and are forced to restart all over. Sometimes, you get things wrong and you just have to stumble through as best you can ... again, video games emulating reality.

L.A. Noire will not be remembered as one of the greatest games ever made, but it will be remembered for the precedent it set ... video games are changing. Gamers are getting tired of the repetitive action-packed crap that the large studios continue to push, most of which is not very good either. There's only so many first-person shooters and third-person button-mashers the gaming community can take before a game like this comes along.

Sometimes, we as gamers need to get out and get some exercise ... and sometimes we need to exercise our brains, and games like this are exactly what that need calls for.

Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Product Release: L.A. Noire (US, 05/17/11)

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