Generally favorable reviews - based on 83 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 78 out of 83
  2. Negative: 0 out of 83
  1. Jun 1, 2011
    Whatever you call it, L.A. Noire is a monumental achievement that every console-owning adventure fan needs to experience.
  2. May 31, 2011
    L.A. Noire is on my personal Game of the Year list. The game appeals to me on so many levels and delivers on the same that overlooking the occasional graphical glitch and annoyance with some of the chases is easy. I'm really looking forward to what Team Bondi comes up with next to fill-out this already fantastic world.
  3. May 25, 2011
    L.A. Noire is not a game for everyone. For those expecting a GTA style experience then you may be disappointed with the outcome. However if your open to a new experience then this is one game that you shouldn't miss.
  4. May 24, 2011
    L.A. Noire is an intelligent game with stellar acting, game changing technology and a cast of memorable characters. It's also Rockstar Games' most refined product, making it one of the best games this high profile company has ever published.
  5. May 23, 2011
    If we were being super critical, L.A. Noire can feel a little repetitive – and slightly linear – at times.
  6. May 23, 2011
    If gaming's holy grail is a thousand stories, well told, L.A. Noire might be the first to come within spitting distance.
  7. May 16, 2011
    A defining moment in video games on this generation, and more than just because of its use of MotionScan technology. The free-roaming genre has become a little stale in recent years, yet LA Noire manages to inject a renewed sense of vigour to the scene and capably demonstrates that video games don't have to be just about your trigger skills.
  8. May 16, 2011
    L.A. Noire is a bold release, because it defies the expectations not just for the type of game Rockstar usually releases, but also for the type of game that receives this degree of care and proficiency in its execution. The world already has enough open-world action games, but a game which marries that open world to such a methodical style of gameplay, with a budget this big, is a rare thing indeed.
  9. May 16, 2011
    There's something entrancing about the way this game plunges you into the violence, the corruption, and the sadness of post-war Los Angeles. Each of the four major desks has a remarkably different tone, and while the slow reveal of Phelps himself is the major narrative thread, it's equally true to say the dark heart of the city itself is an equally important protagonist.
  10. May 16, 2011
    This is vastly different from the countless first- and third-person shooters and all the "me too" open-world games sitting on store shelves. All the things I've only read about in Dashiell Hammett novels, or seen in film classics like Double Indemnity, have all come to interactive life in L.A. Noire.
  11. May 16, 2011
    It's a bold, cinematic step forward in a genre that's dying for innovation, and its implementation of the MotionScan technology is truly a game-changer.
  12. May 23, 2011
    Fabulous writing, a distinct and stylized noir setting (including a soundtrack that's just begging to be put on your MP3 player) along with the both balanced and intriguing investigative gameplay makes for a journey that no gamer should miss.
  13. May 23, 2011
    L.A. Noire is still a video game at heart, and an excellent one at that, but it feels like it's more than that. It has almost reinvented a few genres while at the same time providing something entirely new and different.
  14. Jun 2, 2011
    Not for the faint-hearted, L.A. Noire rarely pulls punches when discussing (or indeed showing) the victims of some truly horrific crimes, from paedophilia and rape to arson and cold-blooded murder – but it's well presented in a tasteful and mature manner, meaning it's less about baiting the Daily Mail and more about creating a unique, captivating experience. By turns disturbing, idling and utterly compelling, L.A. Noire is a triumph for Team Bondi and Rockstar that will no doubt earn the latter yet another nomination for Game of the Year. All things considered, they deserve it too.
  15. 96
    On paper, LA Noire sounds like an open-world sandbox fused with an interactive movie, but in truth, it's so much more. It's groundbreaking, effortlessly engaging and utterly sublime. To miss playing LA Noire would be a heinous crime. Simply put, it's a work of unbridled genius.
  16. Jun 6, 2011
    Though it may be thin on the extracurricular activities, Cole Phelps' journey from flatfoot to crime-buster is the interactive equivalent of a good whodunit book. Once it begins, you won't be able to put it down.
  17. May 31, 2011
    Overall, L.A. Noire is an absolutely amazing title. The development team over at Team Bondi and Rockstar have hit a homerun here and have set the bar for any future titles in this genre.
  18. May 17, 2011
    LA Noire is a very special adventure. An interactive thriller with interrogations, detective sources, charismatic characters and a great plot that make it into one of the best games of this generation.
  19. May 16, 2011
    From the multi-threaded plot down to the variety of suits Cole wears, LA Noire has an unmistakable charisma about it - it's a fantastic game. A few anomalous missteps hold it back from being 'the next big thing', but if it was perfect to begin with they'd have nowhere to grow. As it is now, I really want to see what Team Bondi do next.
  20. May 16, 2011
    Rockstar has excelled in producing a truly innovative title that sets the high-tide mark for inquisitive gamers looking for a real challenge. It's not to be missed.
  21. May 16, 2011
    It is not perfect, and each player will find his own vices and virtues, but we don't remember many projects with such ambition that comes so close to perfection.
  22. May 16, 2011
    L.A. Noire is a revolution in videogaming, both in technological and narrative terms. Its peculiar structure won't make it accessible to everyone though, as the more action oriented players will have to comprehend its sometimes cryptic and episodic structure to fully appreciate the mix. It's still largely recommended to every player out there, since ignoring it would mean losing a fundamental step forward for videogaming as a rich and noble entertainment form.
  23. 94
    There will no doubt be some gamers taken aback by the amount of listening required and lack of control in L.A. Noire. It's a certainty that a large amount of the public could be expecting a GTA clone set in the 40's, and they may be disappointed by the result. Enter L.A. Noire with an open mind and readiness to experience something you've never experienced in gaming before and there's something special waiting for you.
  24. May 17, 2011
    Los Angeles is the perfect playground for all the freaks, creeps, thugs, and murderers you could want to see in a morally ambiguous game, and Noire doesn't pull any punches with its blunt and often graphic depiction. L.A. Noire isn't a perfect game, but it does represent a new benchmark both for realism in the medium as well as for the adventure genre.
  25. May 16, 2011
    Truly this is the most mature game that Rockstar has been a part of. In the end it is something that will go down in history as one of the most innovative games of our time, and for good reason. You are simply supposed to have this game in your collection, if you consider yourself a gamer by any definition of the word.
  26. May 19, 2011
    The presentation is staggering, even managing to make Mafia II look second-rate. It really all comes together in a complete package that no one should missed; and that, folks, is case closed.
  27. May 18, 2011
    If you're thinking about picking up a copy of L.A. Noire (and I recommend that you do), don't judge it as you would other third-person, open-world games. It's not trying to be a new GTA, Red Dead or Saint's Row. It's not about action, it's about investigating. It's not about changing the course of history, it's about experiencing a history. It's not about random encounters, it's about planning, watching and reading encounters. That may not sound like many people's cup of tea at first, but stick with it and you'll reap the rewards.
  28. May 25, 2011
    While the 360 version will not be remembered as a graphic masterpiece, the game should continue to be lauded for what it truly is - An innovative stepping stone into the next generation of strategic gaming.
  29. Jun 5, 2011
    All in all, an absolute treat for the eyes and the ears... that is if you can stomach the content. Anyone interested in L.A. Noire must understand that this is a game for an adult audience. The grisly crime scenes can be very off-putting to some, and considering the subject matter of the game is to solve serial killings and clean up a town notorious for being the Sodom & Gomorrah of the era, players should know what they are getting into beforehand. The dialogue is also quite strong and this title may actually be the first video game title to use a specific acronym for "see you next Tuesday" so liberally (or at all).
  30. Jun 1, 2011
    A few ill-judged action sequences, occasional leaps of logic during the interrogations and some gunplay that just about scrapes through on the positive side of functional prevent this from being a stone cold classic in the same way Grand Theft Auto or Red Dead Redemption are. But if they're A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back, this is surely Rockstar's Return of the Jedi – not the best of the bunch, but still loads better than most of the other stuff out there. Highly recommended.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 757 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 28 out of 250
  1. May 17, 2011
    The people who rip the "feel" of this game, obviously don't understand it was not intended to be your stereotypical video game. It was designed to be an interactive detective story, much like "Heavy Rain" on the PS3. Both games are very innovative. Rockstar took it a step farther and included more gameplay, even allowing you the ability to wield your weapon and personally drive throughout the city. I would not knock this game until you beat it, as your involvement becomes greater as you progress. Initially, it does get repetitive, but later on, the game changes just as you are about to become bored, and it'll capture your attention again, entirely. Full Review »
  2. May 17, 2011
    A few hours in, I'm falling in love with this game. First, I'd like to say that the facial expressions due to the MotionScan tech is spot on. Interviews are interesting and you feel like a true detective when you get someone to admit they're hiding something. Aside from the interviews, the animations during the in-game cutscenes are amazing and honestly unlike anything I've seen. The gameplay is great from the shootouts to the driving. Clue collecting before interrogations feels rewarding and for those who have played a GTA/RDR, the controls will feel right at home. The story is compelling so far along with the back story and other bits of info you find along the way. It really makes me look forward to seeing how everything comes together when I make a dent in the game.

    I can't wait to sink more hours into it, but this will definitely be a game I fall in love with.
    Full Review »
  3. May 17, 2011
    A revolutionary title that exceeds expectations on all levels, L.A. Noire takes a leap forward in the adventure genre, as well as the technology genre. This video game is a prime example where art influences the technology, and the technology influences the art. Its very rare when video games, or any media for that matter, pull this off effectively, but this game has. It's a new form of game-play all together, not something many are used to, and that is why there are less than deserving reviews out there. People need to realize that this game isn't meant to build off of the past, but instead move to the future, and to be honest I like where this game is taking us. Full Review »