Reviews for L.A. Noire [Playfire]


Fascinating and groundbreaking take on investigative gaming

Nivear | July 24, 2013 | See all Nivear's reviews »

There is plenty to say about L.A. Noire, and it's all good. You control protagonist Cole Phelps as he solves crimes as an Los Angeles Police Officer in the 1940s, eventually rising through the ranks. The narrative is compelling and with the new MotionScan technology in this game, working on cases is extremely enjoyable. As you work through a case you uncover clues, interview witnesses for more clues and chase down leads and question suspects to get at the truth, only, instead of simply guessing the player must actively study the reaction of the suspects to gauge if their responses check out. The aesthetic and environment are wonderfully articulated, with costumes, hair styles, cars, even the buildings and mannerisms of the NPCs that walk the streets all modeled in 1940s style. The controls are a little bit finicky at times but it's only noticeable when trying to go for the best rating on a case, and otherwise isn't too disastrous. That said, it is a very tiny issue in what is a master piece in gaming. The objectives are clear and precise and ultimately the freedom of choice is huge, even though some choices clearly affect your rating, they are still there to be made. The game can take anywhere from 15-40 hours to complete depending on how much time you spend on collectibles and if you drive to every location yourself (as there is the option of getting your partner to drive which skips the trip) The best part about this game though is it never feels like a chore to complete tasks, such as driving across the vast landscape of 1940s Los Angeles, everything is so breathtakingly detailed. If you enjoy open-world sandbox games, solving complicated puzzles with numerous solutions or have any fondness for early cinema and excellent narratives, do yourself a favour and get this game! If nothing else it's something to experience that shouldn't be missed out on.


Superb Facial Expressions!

TGAlan | July 5, 2013 | See all TGAlan's reviews »

L.A. Noire is very climatic game. It has got extremely interesting story with lots of memorable characters. Facial expressions and movements of peoples are absolutely amazing. Sound is really good too. Unfortunately this game have poor optimisation, so I had to play with low/mid settings. Anyway graphics on max settings is good. Additionally I think car chases would be more realistic. Moreover this game stands out of present games, because it demands a bit of thinking - especially at interviewing suspects.


Be a detective!

thecocou | July 5, 2013 | See all thecocou's reviews »

LA Noir feels like a film noir, and gets you into the shoes of a cop starting his career in Los Angeles in 1947. Using your skills to find clues, chase and interrogate suspects you will solve cases and climb ranks on the police department. The graphics and music are great and the actings and animations are perfect, (you have to fend for them to discover whether a suspect is lying or telling the true). Besides the story, you can drive or walk through the city and attend the calls of help, confronting gangsters in shootouts, or chasing suspects with your car or by foot. To play this game you will need time and concentration, you should pay attention and take deciciones correct, you will find a good doses of action, plus puzzles and a good story. Recommended!


Great puzzle/action game

lok0812 | July 3, 2013 | See all lok0812's reviews »

This is a very good puzzle solving game mixed with some actions with a great facial capture, combined with the most suitable music ever for a game. The gameplay, even repetitive sometimes, is a great experience. The game is fairly long, extended even more with the cases from the complete edition. The story is also top notch, even though predictable at times. Expect huge FPS drops from time to time that shouldn't last for more than five seconds, regardless of your computer's performance. Overall, this game looks great and you should buy it.


One of the best detective game from the last decade.

sergebelanger22 | June 27, 2013 | See all sergebelanger22's reviews »

L.A. Noire takes place in the late 40's early 50's, as the name states it, in the City of Angels. You play as Cole Phelps, a former soldier who was promoted to inspector due to some brilliant actions during World War II. However, it is very vague how you earned your medals, how you were promoted. They try to keep you quite far from it all the story long. You will learn few details here and there as you progress through the story. I found the story very good. The atmosphere is perfect. You hear music from that time that really existed, cars that really existed too, buildings and streets that were part of L.A. at that time too. You will also learn about all the bribing that existed between the police, the government and the companies. You take part of 4 different departments: traffic, homicide, vice and arson. You will always work with a partner that is more or less useful, and each of them will always be as unpleasant as the previous one. They all seem shady, as it is the case for everyone that you encounter in this game. That makes you feel like you are the only honest person in the city. There was a big hype about the gesture and facial design in this game. However, I did not find it that good. It was correct, but not above the standard. People will act differently all depending on if they are lying, telling the truth or hiding you something. That's where your job starts. You have to find clues on the crime scene, interrogate witnesses to discover what really happened. Each witness will act very differently, which can complicate your work a lot. Sometimes, it is very easy to know that a person is lying, but some other times you will think that they are lying because that the reaction is the same, but in fact they are telling you the truth. I guess it would have been too easy if the reactions were similar, but now it sometimes feels like a trial and error approach. The driving is better than in GTA IV, however you can easily tell that it is a Rockstar game. It is hard to not hit anything while you are driver, which makes the missions tougher to get the 5 star rating. However, most of the time you can ask your partner to drive if you want that 5 star rating or prefer to spend your time playing rather than driving from one spot to the other. There are some dlc's available for it, however I would not recommend them at their full price. They add one mission each which can take around 30 minutes each to complete. If you loved the game and want more missions, get them. They are not really linked with anything that occured in the story, so they really feel apart from it. The missions will take you about 15-20 hours to complete and you can add another 20 if you want to complete all the achievements. This is a game that I would recommend for players who like to read, spend time on finding clues and take their time in a game. This is not a game that will stress you up, but you will always want to know what happens next.


A Game Based on your Intelligence

Sivisx | June 20, 2013 | See all Sivisx's reviews »

Oh look a open sandbox game with a male protagonist that drives cars and shoots people made by Rockstar, well that's not new. But wait what's this, you are behind the badge..? Surely you must... no, you're not corrupt. Well butter my balls, R* went in a new direction and they surely did go into it deep because it took me thirty hours or so to finish the story. You take the role of an LAPD Detective solving crimes in the 1940's.. some so detailed you'd not be shocked to find they are based on real events, heavily based. A few in fact are the actual cases, where you find the actual guy. But don't let that think its not hard, by golly it is, unless you have a PhD in Forensics you will fail a lot, and you get penalties for blowing a case. The game is well known for it life-like faces and details, which are extremely creepy how realistic they are, and so the game is a difficult thing to run so if you have a really powerful computer by this gem at full price. (I will add that I am only putting this as a 90 and not higher, that's because this is just very demanding on your computer. I have by no means a low end PC, and found this game difficult to render inside the city because of the high number of NPCs. Whether this is a port issue or my own issue is hard to say.)


Great concept and execution.

jackyboi1014 | June 17, 2013 | See all jackyboi1014's reviews »

I like games which are interactive novels or movies. L.A. Noire neatly meets this criteria and brilliantly recreates a colorful period of L.A.'s history. I have never seen a game populated by believable characters who inspire compassion in the player. Nor have I seen real faces with real emotions, from the slight twitch of nervousness to red-faced, bulging eyes of fear. L.A. Noire delivers this and then some. I loved every second of this hard-boiled slice of life. In later years this game will definitely be looked back on as one of the most ground-breaking games of all time. It is the first game that I felt emotionally involved. And it was a riveting experience.


Different from everything else

Stebsis | June 5, 2013 | See all Stebsis's reviews »

There just is no other game like L.A. Noire. There are games with murder mysteries and investigation, but no game goes to this kind of detail and lets you yourself have so much impact what happens and what clues you find. You play as Phelps, a police officer who gets promoted soon after the tutorial section of the game. He's not particularly interesting character, kind of your basic good cop. Tutorial section was nicely done, it immediately gives you a case you need to work on and you get to do the things like looking for clues, chasing suspect and interrogation which all lay a part in what the conclusion of each case is. You get a number of cases to solve like thefts and murders. Some of them are a bit hit or miss in terms of how interesting the case is, but no matter what the content is, it's always great and exciting to get to investigate the scene of crime and chase down suspects, even though the latter is a bit too scripted feeling each time. Interrogation is a fun process, but you never really get to say things the way you would, or a normal person would. It's too often either being a nice guy who believes the suspect, or a complete asshole who just shouts and frightens everyone. Theres three different reaction to what the suspect has said, you either believe, doubt or don't believe, but even doubt comes a bit douche like. If you don't believe or doubt, you need to provide evidence to support your claim. You should never go straight to the suspect to ask questions because often times you won't have anything to prove if he/she is lying or not. Outside of cases, or on your way to them, you get to drive around in very nice looking 1940's Los Angeles. It's just a shame that there's basically nothing to do there. Sometimes when you're driving you get a call that a suspect is near and you need to chase him down, that's basically all there is. It's nice though that you get to choose wether you want to drive, or your partner which results in skipping the driving, and because depending on damage you caused when driving also affects the overall score of the case, skipping it is often the best choise. L.A. Noire is a game I think everyone should try out wether or not they're interested in this sort of thing. It's interesting and different from everything else at the moment.


Brilliant game

Crazy4ever | May 24, 2013 | See all Crazy4ever's reviews »

LA Noire is a brilliant. The cases are set up in a unique way. The graphics are very good but I have a feeling that it is a bit bad optimized for pc. Still, if you have a generally good computer, it will run fine. The most stunning part of the graphics are the facial expressions and how humans are animated. The gameplay is exciting and it is a mix of action and detective-work. Mostly detective-work but I feel that that was more exciting than the action scenes. Still, if you want action, there is quite a lot of it + all the sidemissions are action, while the most of the main missons are about finding clues and interogation. Steering cars is quite bad and reminds me of The Godfather: The videogame. Also, finding clues is the most boring part of investigation, as it is easy to get stuck. LA Noire is not a game you will complete in a few days, both because it is long, but also because it can get a bit boring if you play more than about 15 hours within a week. Anyhow, each crime mission is fairly long and has its own exciting story, which means you can play it in portions. LA Noire is a very good game, with few problems. It is uniqe and definetly a game worth buying, both for its uniqe style and as it is a very good game at all.


Not getting paid for a job has never been so fun!

UltraJake | May 10, 2013 | See all UltraJake's reviews »

While the game is best known for it's mo-capped face animation technology, the game itself it still pretty good. It's flawed, with the vehicle handling being unusually arcadey and the "Doubt" option seemingly like an insult button when you first start out, but the cases and overall story is interesting and well put together. While Rockstar games are also known as Terrorist Sims by many, this particular game places the player in the role of the law. I wouldn't recommend running over pedestrians if you would like to do well. For $30 it's completely worth the price.



sittinghawk10 | April 27, 2013 | See all sittinghawk10's reviews »

Decent game. With all the hype this game had I expected more. The facial tech is very good though. Missions where somewhat enjoyable and I love the cops angle. I'd recommend a buy at around 5 bucks. Could have been a lot better executed.


Spectacular concept and accomplishment

georgecopos | Jan. 27, 2013 | See all georgecopos's reviews »

Fabolous facial animations, this is the first thing it comes to mind when you think about LA Noire; and i got to wonder why this technique hasnt been used more often. But as spectacular as those facial animations can be, that much they screwed the hair of all characters. Other than that, you have to pray the concept with the clues and interrogations, which basically along with the facial animations make the whole game. The story is pretty interesting, and although you work in 5 different police departments, every case is interconnected. The city is nicely done but at some point it may feel generic, dont know maybe i miss the sky scrapers of Liberty City.


Fun and Fresh

Lekes | Dec. 29, 2012 | See all Lekes's reviews »

It can all really be said in about three words: Fun and Fresh. It is definitely fans for an adventure type game, with some nods to the gun-play of Rockstar games before. I love it and, personally, I feel exhilarated when I nail someone with evidence and despair when my witnesses clam up. Yes it may seem repetitive chasing after crooks and collecting clues, but the fun is more in how you use the information to interrogate people. This is one that is at least worth a try, you may be pleasantly surprised (and if you don't like it I'm sure it will hold its value as a trade-in for a while)


One of it's kind

atik12 | Dec. 11, 2012 | See all atik12's reviews »

LA Noire is very different from other games. You play as a detective and every case is interesting and unique. But it's meant for short terms. When you play LA Noire for hours you get bored. Doing same thing over and over but story keeps you playing. Overall it's easy, actually very easy. Facial expressions are very good but overdone. Even three year old kid can tell either lying or telling the truth.


Not your usual game

schroff | Sept. 14, 2012 | See all schroff's reviews »

In this title you play an inspector who solves various crimes - that is the core of the story. You are given numerous scenarios and are asked to judge if the other person is lying or telling the truth by judging his facial expressions, which is a ground breaking piece or work. A trade offf is the 30 fps cap bit it's ok. There's a levelling system as well depending on your successes. There's some driving and shooting but they're lacklustre and not the focus of the game. Overall, it drags but there's still a great game underneath!


Easy but unique game

panz3r88 | Sept. 7, 2012 | See all panz3r88's reviews »

LA Noire is a particular adventure game in which you are a detective who must investigate on various cases in Los Angeles in 1947. The game is original and allow you to experience all the things a detective must do to solve the case, like searching for clues in the crime scenes and interrogate suspects. There are also some action parts that consist in gun fights and car chases, but they are not the core of the gameplay. The interrogations are the most original part of the game: the faces of the various NPC so realistic that it seems that you are looking to real people. With this complex animations the player must look at the NPC and decide if he is saying the thruth or not and accuse him or not using the clues you find in the crime scene. The game is not really long and it's easy if you don't disable all the helps. The graphic is good , but it's not optimized and you can see stuttering even on really powerful pc configuration


It's a unique game and one of it's kind.

xboxer | Aug. 28, 2012 | See all xboxer's reviews »

LA Noire is special. Nothing like it has ever been done before. It is an open world game. But instead of action packed missions, you get to play detective which means you don't do alot of run and gun. Instead you are made to observe suspects facial expressions and judge for yourself if they are lying or not and whether you can squeeze more information out of them. It's interesting enough but it gets repetitive and most of the time you end up playing a guessing game. It's kind of boring to me.


Loads of fun!

Sandoooooo | Aug. 12, 2012 | See all Sandoooooo's reviews »

Rockstar have done it again. They've created another game with a richer story than you'd get from a modern Hollywood blockbuster. They combined it with a new style of game. L.A. Noire tells the story of Cole Phelps, an LAPD detective in post-war Los Angeles. While the game has the same look and feel of Grand Theft Auto IV and Red Dead Redemption. L.A. Noire's gameplay is completely different. Gone is the ability to shoot up the average passer-by; as Cole Phelps, you're a good cop in a world of corruption. Instead of pumping lead into the criminals, you now have to coerce information and confessions out of them. Suspects must be interrogated in order to open up new avenues for you to investigate. This game takes a bit of brainpower and skill in order to read whether your suspect is telling the truth, or if they're trying to serve you a plate full of stinking lies. Revolutionary, refreshing and compelling. L.A. Noire will keep you hooked as long as you can appreciate it for what it is. This game is mature rated, and it has adult themes and languages, along with blood and violence which makes it not a great game for children.


A Beautiful, different game

khanbm | July 14, 2012 | See all khanbm's reviews »

The first thing which struck me when I started playing this game was the beautifully recreated 1940s Los Angeles atmosphere. It makes it feel like you actually are living in that time. Tiny details such as letters, telegrams and cars are all authentic and recreated perfectly. What made this game so much fun for me is that it is different. It has a similarity to GTA IV but rather than simply mucking about like a criminal, you are put in the policeman's shoes. You have to investigate homicides, abandoned cars and other street crimes which take place while you are driving. It is something unlike any other game I have played before. I found the puzzle solving enjoyable with an awesome story and believable characters. What makes the characters even better is the realistic facial expressions. You can see tiny details such as eyebrow movement, different emotions etc. and on top of this, the facial expressions actually play a role in helping you to identify whether a witness is lying or not. Although the game is really fun, there are a few problems. A lot of the missions turn out to have the same basic formula. Although the story is different it always starts with you investigating a crime, finding witnesses and interviewing them and then chasing down the suspect. Despite the repetitiveness, Is still really enjoyed the game. If you're looking for something different to your normal first-person shooters and open world games you should seriously consider this game.


Love it

max778 | June 17, 2012 | See all max778's reviews »

The story in the game is great. They keep it well paced and it doesn’t get confusing like some other games. Phelps is a former marine so you get some flashbacks as well which put some insight into Phelp’s past. You get to deal with some more famous charterers later in the game as well as some familiar voices from various tv shows and movies. Every time you catch a bad guy and do the case correctly you feel good about yourself but it goes both ways because they captain will give you an ear full and maybe even demote you if you mess up to bad. Still without ruining anything major in the story you can look forward to a great story and a wall paced one at that. Next for the L.A. Noire review we will look at game play. For the game play its pretty straight forward. You drive old school cars which feel old school when you drive them, so if you are used to GTA 4 good luck with this one. If you get put into a fist fight you can dodge, grapple and punch. If you do enough damage you can do a finisher. When it comes to gun fights they only have about 6 guns unless you get the DLC gun. It’s simple none the less. Take cover and shoot when they pop out. Unless you have the Tommy gun I pretty much just walk and let out a barrage with that thing. The biggest problem I have is sometimes it is hard to control Phelps when you are looking for clues. It kind of suffers from that Heavy Rain control problem. You can get stuck on walls or tables pretty easily. When you get to a crime scene you have to find clues. They make it easy for you and a chime will go off when you are near something you can inspect. Be sure to remember everything you inspect isn’t going to be a clue. After you find clues you will typically have to question someone. You ask them a question then have to pick truth, doubt or lie. You have to look at there facial expression and determine which one to pick. If you know they are lying and have the proof pick lie but if not pick doubt. They also have a level up system which gives you things called intuition points. you can use these to help with questions or have all the clues put on your mini map. They will also give you knew suits as well. Now we will look at audio and video for the L.A. Noire review. The biggest pet peve I have with any video game is when a voice acting is terrible. A prime example of this is Just Cause 2. Just because you are playing in a different country doesn’t mean you need to hire terrible voice actors from that country. Anyways in this game the voice acting is perfect. The faces move well with the words and the people really sell it. Most of the people are previous actors or voice actors anyways which is always nice. Graphically it looks good. They put a lot of detail in the world and cars. What really sells the characters in the game is the facial animations. They must of put a bunch of time into this because it hasn’t been done before in a game and looks great. It is also how you can tell if someone is lying or not so it had to be good. Both of these are really good in the game. They don’t try to oversell anything which is good. Now for the longevity of L.A. Noire. This game is long. It took me about 35 hours to complete but I replayed a ton of cases to get 5 star ratings on all of them. The game features about 20 cases and after the tutorial ones they each take anywhere from 45 minutes to 2 hours. Once you finish all the cases you can free roam in the city as well. They gave you plenty to do in the city you can do street crimes, find rare vehicles or look for golden film reels. All of it is extra and doesn’t need to be done but it is a nice little edition. They also have DLC cases coming and already have 4 out as I am doing this review. With the Rockstar pass you can get each of them for free which is a really good deal in my opinion because the DLC is just as good as the normal cases, sometimes better. Needless to say even after you beat the game you will most likely still be playing the game or keeping it for DLC. Here comes the part where I nit pick at things I hate. The driving in this game is fine but why when I hit a fence or something that I should be able to break going 50 mphs does my car just bounce off? It is just like in GTA 4 when you hit the smallest, thinnest tree in the world with the fastest car you don’t even budge it. It’s annoying but not game breaking. Also it seems like people want to get run over and if they do guess who loses a star? You. Yup the more damage you cause the more likely you are to lose a star. Other then the lack of weapons though that’s about all I can complain about.


Enjoyable and rich experience... but with one issue...

albeenox | May 18, 2012 | See all albeenox's reviews »

How could I start a review without mentioning the big "thing" about this game... The facial animation. WOW. Never before have I seen such impressively emotive faces - It really is stunning to watch, and really brings the characters to life, along with the fantastic voice work. Visually, the game overall is pretty impressive. The game really manages to capture its time period and bring it all to life; and makes it feel so immersive as well. The game as a whole, really makes you FEEL a part of a living breathing world, rich in atmosphere and emotion. The game was easy to pick up and play, especially if you've ever played a sandbox game before (especially a gta game or similar), with responsive controls that aren't overly complicated. The story is interesting, but quite long and can get a bit 'samey' in places, but the interesting world and characters, make it easy to keep playing. The one disappointment (and quite frankly, it was a BIG one for me) that NEEDS pointing out, is that the game is capped at 30fps. Now for some, that will be a non-issue - but for me, it was immediately noticeable and really impacted on my enjoyment for what is otherwise a pretty cool game. Supposedly, Rockstar claim this is to preserve the integrity of the film-like "feel" they were trying to bring to the game, but to me its irrelevant - a 30fps game, is just uncomfortable - especially if you are used to games running much smoother. Games and films aren't interchangeable anyway, so a 30fps running game will never look "film-like", so its most likely a lie because all the animation was done at 30fps for the consoles, and they didn't want to change it for the port. Like I said... a totally irrelevant gripe for some, but I feel its definately something that people should be aware of. There are ways around the cap, but new problems are introduced with it, as Its not a perfect solution. Overall, a very ambitious, enjoyable and satisfying game to play - just a pity about that damn 30-FPS cap!! :(


Liked it.

scottnat | April 13, 2012 | See all scottnat's reviews »

A much better PC port than GTA 4 was, albeit still requiring a pretty beefy system to run in full settings without stutter (you'll likely have to dial some settings down no matter your computer, at least i did). But doesn't have near the number of bugs and issues as GTA 4 had. In terms of the game, is beautiful. Description above pretty much catches tone of what it's about - 1940's, gangsters, seedy underbelly etc. One thing which really does stand out with these Rockstar games, and i guess is a product of their huge budgets, is the quality of voice acting and the subtle details from the motion capture tech. It really is first rate. Bodies don't always fully match detail on faces, but the overall character created more than makes up for that. The only downside i'd say is the gameplay can get a touch repetitive. Though i enjoyed the world enough it didn't really bother me.