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Forums > Submission Feedback > tomchick's L.A. Noire review

This thread is in response to a review for L.A. Noire on the Xbox 360. You are encouraged to view the review in a new window before reading this thread.

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Author: fleinn
Posted: May 20, 2011 (01:01 AM)
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"The central mystery of LA Noire is this: am I playing a bloated adventure game or a barren open-world game?"

Thank you. Driving me mad to see all the reviews skirting around this.


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Author: Masters (Mod)
Posted: May 20, 2011 (08:01 AM)
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This review is not only thorough, but a pleasure to read.


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Author: goatx3
Posted: May 20, 2011 (02:01 PM)
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i had a feeling this game would turn out the exact way that you described it. nice review. i'll be skipping this one.


Smokey was a conscientious objector.

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Author: joseph_valencia
Posted: May 20, 2011 (03:09 PM)
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The words flow nicely and the descriptions and criticisms of the game seem very credible. Great review.


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Author: KaworuIIDX
Posted: May 21, 2011 (03:07 AM)
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Thank God I found your review, I thought it was just me who felt this way about the game, especially after reading tens of bloated and overrated reviews


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Author: goatx3
Posted: May 21, 2011 (11:49 AM)
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this review makes my heart sink. i couldn't even stand red dead redemption. that the author compares it favorably to la noire makes me sad. the concept had so much potential.


Smokey was a conscientious objector.

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Author: PathoPhil
Posted: May 24, 2011 (12:27 AM)
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For the most part I agree with your review, but one important point has been ignored. I agree that the ending of the game made sense, but the way the writer arrived there did not. Starting with the bizarre affair with Elsa and ending with the gamer finishing out the game as Jack Kelso. Because of those two key plot devices, I think that it's fair to conclude that the story development did not make sense. Thus, it's hard to say that the story itself was enjoyable.


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Author: Boberto
Posted: May 25, 2011 (11:47 AM)
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Wow, I don't know what game you were all playing, but your copy must've been vastly different than mine. What is up with this pre-conceived notion that the game has to fit nicely in a specific genre. Does it have to be a totally open world game? NO! Does it have to be a total adventure game? NO! Why can't it be a little of both. I swear everyone here has blinders on. If you went into this game expecting GTA 1940s, I can understand some of your frustration. But geez folks, judge the game for what it is, not what you thought it should have been.


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Author: joseph_valencia
Posted: May 25, 2011 (01:33 PM)
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He did judge the game for what it is. Read again.


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Author: Boberto
Posted: May 26, 2011 (12:25 PM)
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Nope, read it several times and he didn't, he keeps trying to compare it to either open world Rockstar games or advature games (Police Quest...seriously). Tom was trying so hard to lump this into a category that he overlooked key tennets to the game. He complains that you can't go into buildings or own property like GTA. Well, you can go into the buildings that matter and the character is a police detective, what the heck is he going to own?

Tom complains that you have to analyze several items at a crime scene only to realize they aren't pertinent and feels it is more like other adventure games. Again, not totally an adventure game here either. It's a detective game, and dectectives need to analyze everything at a crime scene, it adds a level of detail that just isn't there in a lot of other games. The champagne glass example is ridiculous as you find out very early in the game if 2 items look the same, you don't need to analyze both of them. Plus, you have the option of slacking on the evidence collecting, it will just change the outcome of the game.

Some other complains I had about his review. Tom complains about the open world driving. Well, here's something he neglected to mention, you can have your partner drive which fast travels you to the destination thus negating a lot of the tediousness.

He saids that the interrogating is vague which is utterly false. The facial expressions tell you fairly clearly (for the most part) that the person is either lying or telling the truth. If they are lying, you simply need to determine if you have evidence to contradict the lie or if you simply doubt they're telling the truth. Not to mention that you accumulate points as you rank up giving you insight as to where clues are hidden, whether someone is telling a lie, etc.

Look, I don't totally disagree with Tom's review, he makes several valid points. But 5 out of 10 is a pretty harsh representation of what this game is. If you change (not lower) your expectations of what this game is supposed to be, you can appreciate for fulfilling a niche in gaming that has hardly, if ever, been scratched.


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Author: True
Posted: May 26, 2011 (01:24 PM)
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I hate to admit it, but Bob actually made this game sound better than I had initially thought...

I say this with all seriousness, but you should write a review. I would love to see your take on it after that post.


If I Offended You, You Needed It.


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Author: zigfried (Mod)
Posted: May 27, 2011 (05:37 AM)
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I hate to admit it, but Bob actually made this game sound better than I had initially thought...

None of that actually sounded good to me. I mean, he offered his counterpoint to the review's text, but it was more like describing why specific passages were inaccurate, not explaining why any of that matters. For example, examining everything may very well be how a detective operates, but that doesn't really take away from the point that -- in a game -- that's kind of annoying. Tom described the feeling he got from the Hall of Records; with that in mind, I could understand why he enjoyed that moment of tedium. But as Tom explained, doing that for everything in the game would be tiresome. The champagne glass example may be ridiculous, but is examining objects actually fun or challenging?

And I've seen other people point out the "partner drive" option. Does that eliminate the driving cutscene, the parking cutscene, the walking the character up to the front door, and the door-opening cutscene? Wouldn't it have been better if the world were inherently interesting and worth driving through? That's the stuff I recall from Tom's review as being annoying -- not the driving itself. All those cutscenes would actually be more forgivable in an open-world game... ie, a game that was so packed and full of life that it felt "real". So when someone points out that it's not meant to be open-world (even though it's an open driving world) and you can fast-track past the driving part, that still doesn't make it sound good.

LA Noire's detractors say the world is empty, and LA Noire's supporters explain that the world is empty because it's not an open-world game and Tom Chick was evil for trying to compare it to open-world games. That's what I don't like about Tom's detractors -- they think that explaining why he's "wrong" is enough, but it really isn't. They need to explain why they think the game is fun. My expectations for the game don't match Tom's, but all of that stuff sounds awfully annoying to me too.

I challenge Boberto (or whoever) to write a review describing the things they liked about the game and explaining why those things are cool.

//Zig


Unlimited Zig Works!


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Author: fleinn
Posted: May 27, 2011 (08:05 AM)
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..so very defensive we ended up being lately :p

I think what Tom meant in the review is that it's difficult to know if you're on the same page as the writers. It's a very common thing in rpgs - the dialogue people remember usually won't be the set pieces, but the parts where you really meant the dialogue-choice you had, and where the responses to it was something you thought was believable.

Same with the situations that break immersion. Suddenly people just sit in the chair doing nothing, while you can rummage around for a plot-sensitive clue, etc. Because you know that if you don't find the clue now, you can't question anyone about it later, etc.

L.A. Noire has a few of those. Either that you're doubting someone and Cole starts screaming they're lying without being provoked in any way. Or if you know they're lying - but the game won't let you use a clue in the way you think you can. Or the game just expects you to pick up on what Cole thinks - this is the same as writing a book, and then instead of writing an actual descriptive sentence, you go ahead and just about tell the reader that "you now know" such and such, without really explaining it. ..it's not good writing, and we get the narrative breakage that way.

I mean, there have been a few times I wish I could change the way the way the interrogation goes, but I'm just getting a game of "pick the right choice" - that in the end doesn't actually matter, and it ends in another chase and a cutscene. ..


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Author: True
Posted: May 27, 2011 (03:30 PM)
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None of that actually sounded good to me.

The interrogation and reading people's reactions sounded kind of interesting, as did the evidence search. It kind of reminds me of Heavy Rain. Though I imagine it only works in small doses and from what you said it sounds more like it's constant.


If I Offended You, You Needed It.


This message was deleted at the request of honestgamer, the person who originally posted it.

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Author: honestgamer (Mod)
Posted: June 11, 2011 (07:44 PM)
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Testing.


"Too often we enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought." - John F. Kennedy on reality

"What if everything you see is more than what you see--the person next to you is a warrior and the space that appears empty is a secret door to another world? What if something appears that shouldn't? You either dismiss it, or you accept that there is much more to the world than you think. Perhaps it really is a doorway, and if you choose to go inside, you'll find many unexpected things." - Shigeru Miyamoto


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Author: joseph_valencia
Posted: June 11, 2011 (09:22 PM)
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You passed.


Spaceworlder was able to build this sig IN A CAVE…… WITH A BOX OF SCRAPS!!


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