the resigned gamer, everything I hate about the thing I love the most

LA Noire: as fun as a black & white movie

Posted by Sir Cucumber at 6:30 PM on Wednesday, May 23, 2012

LA Noire - meh.Interviewing characters in LA Noire is so lifelike, it's almost like you're playing a real video game.

And for all the impact your choices of whom to pursue, and your performances to that effect have on future events, that video game, were it to be a video game (oh god let's hope no one ever makes it into a video game), would be The Wire.

Were it not for the immense respect I have for Rockstar, I would have quit this "game" in 20 minutes.

Don't get me wrong- I was raised on Touch & Clicks, and learned how to type from their predecessors, yelling the proof of age questions for Leisure Suit Larry 1-3 to my bachelor dad in the bath tub. LA Noire has just as much game as they do, but it doesn't have a hyperspeed button or enter key (or a hilarious text parser).

And fine, I get it, paying attention to the cutscenes and dialogue is essential to following the intricately unfolded plot and to catching people in their lies, and I should stop restarting every time I mess up and just live with the consequences, but what consequences are there to live with? Maybe if I'd known that none of it would ever matter I might not have tried so hard, but then I really doubt I could have kept playing. And if you really wanted to "immerse" me in detective grays, never truly knowing when what I did was wrong, then why'd you rub my face in it with every question and then slap me with a score?

  LA Noire pisses me off
Thank god I figured out that you can quit between interview questions without causing an auto-save, or else you'd have to call me a grudge gamer (apparently Sam Houser originally suggested Grudge Games as a name for their label...see Rockstar, I roll deep! ...David Kushner would do better writing for Seventeen, by the way...)

And back to that twisted yarn whose cinematics were too important to cut: don't kid yourself.

Every Rockstar plot boils down to an outsider anti-hero with a flexible moral code and unending patience overcoming adversity through being exponentially smarter and more capable than whoever is bossing them around, culminating in their inevitable A) long-foreshadowed betrayal by closest friends in a manner that satisfyingly portrays societal hypocrisies but often results in death, B) elevation to overlord of a vast and intricate world in which they meander free, with a curious whimsy and relative impunity, or C) all of the above.

I hate to criticize some of the only people in this industry who take risks with, and ownership of, their product, but there it is. All shit stinks, even when it comes from a rockstar.