Xbox la-noire

Published on February 25th, 2011 | by Hubert McReed


L.A. Noire

In such a technology-driven industry, it’s all too easy to lose sight of what makes this pastime so interesting. The quest for bigger, badder and broader assaults on our senses may be impressive in a coder’s window, but it’s very hard not to feel like we’re lacking a bit of subtlety sometimes.

Which is why L.A. Noire is such a breath of fresh air. Not that it’s anything other than enormous, of course – it is a Rockstar game after all. But the fact that L.A. Noire is so driven by tech, and it’s the tech itself that’s by far its most interesting and creative element – that’s what has us buzzing.

By now you’ll have probably seen the Motionscan trailer – where a ton of cameras motion-capture facial animation separately from full-body performance – but seeing it in practice is another thing altogether.

You play the part of Cole Phelps, a WW2 vet who returns to LA to join the police force. As you work your way up the ranks, you’re taken on a journey through the grimy underbelly of America’s sleaziest city, encountering all manner of nastiness on the way. Unlike most cop games though, you’ll actually spend time interviewing suspects and building cases. And that’s where the technology comes in.

In your interrogations, you’ll have to carefully watch the remarkable facial animation of the witnesses and suspects in order to determine whether they’re telling the truth. If you’re a Derren Brown-type, you’ll get to the truth much quicker by correctly identifying when they’re telling porkies. The quality of the acting in what we’ve seen so far is really something, and if that standard is maintained, then this will be yet another Rockstar classic.

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About the Author

Hubert lives in downtown New Jersey where he pretends to be a wrestler on a boring day job when he would rather be writing. He spends his free time as Freelance writer and mountain biking. He also likes black belt in some martial arts dojo. He lives with his lively dog named Loaf.

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