sup909's L.A. Noire (Xbox 360) review

Impressive Tech, But Gameplay Wears Out

I have never been a huge fan of Rockstar games. I love open world games, but the Rockstar ones always had funky controls and pretty pedantic story lines going on with them. I decided to give LA Noire a go though since it had some really interesting things happening for it. First off it isn't really an open world game in the same sense as GTA. Second, it has some of the most impressive facial animations I have ever seen.

Now the facial animation and the technology behind it are the most impressive part of this game. That all works really well and fits in perfectly with the sort of detective story Rockstar is trying to tell here. The story itself is actually pretty solid from the outset too, placing the player in a world as a rising detective. The detective elements themselves are also interesting at least at first.

Once the game gets going I sort of eventually hit a wall with it on a couple of levels. First and foremost I just did not like the main character that I was playing. I am not sure why Rockstar feels the need to do this, but they have this penchant for having damaged individuals as their protagonists. For me, I cannot keep playing a game when I don't like who I am playing as.

The actual game mechanics themselves are pretty decent at the outset, but the problem is they just become boring after 6+ hours of gameplay. They don't really seem to grow anywhere and you as the player ultimately are just going through the motions when exploring a crime scene. The same is true for the side missions in the game. They are just straight up boring and uninspired.

The interview process for suspects in the game comes off as incredibly impressive at first and is for the most part pretty good, especially when the subtly of the facial animations comes off successfully. The only real problem I had with those aspects is that I never really knew when I was supposed to doubt or accuse the suspect of lying. Even with supposed evidence I apparently got several interview questions wrong and that aspect was never made clear to me.

Ultimately the really good game concepts boiled simply down to repetitive game mechanics that I just kept repeating. After 10+ hours of this I simply got bored of it all.

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