Rockstar is known for it's open world crime narratives but with L.A. Noire we have something a little different. Gone are the means to wreak havoc in whatever fashion you find suitable, You're beat cop Cole Phelps trying to climb the ladder of law enforcement. After returning from the big WW2 you find yourself investigating crimes during a few of the bloodiest years in L.A.'s history. In the first few hours of the game you'll learn the ins and outs of investigating and cracking cases as well as chasing down the people responsible when they decide the law has gotten a bit too close for comfort.
The mechanics of L.A. Noire are noticeably reminiscent of GTA but, Rockstar has managed to re-purpose and refine much of the general gameplay into a completely different product, not to mention the core additions of investigation and interrogation to the mix. Those looking for an action heavy game may want to look somewhere else for there fix as the pacing here is much different than the rest of Rockstar's stable of games. We do get some really great gun play at points but the bulk of the main game is the investigations. So far the longest of these has taken me about an hour and had a pretty spectacular action oriented ending. Aside from the main story missions you'll get dispatch calls while driving around that you can choose to respond to or not. these are much shorter more action oriented sequences, based around normal(or in some cases not-so-normal) street crimes.
Rockstar faithfully recreates not only the atmosphere of 1940's L.A. but also the chilling air surrounding crime scenes. Roped off and usually surrounded by reporters you really feel like your investigation is important. Searching the scene for evidence and leads gets more intriguing by the case. The more I played the more I found myself honestly getting into the cases and trying as hard as I can to get any lead possible.
I'm really enjoying my time with this game so far. It's a breath of fresh air when it comes to open world games and I think Rockstar has crafted something truly unique. The investigations have all been interesting and all the characters are fully realized, especially with the new facial animation. I'm looking forward to finishing this up and getting the full review out.