The 3 Pillars of L.A. Noire gameplay
L.A. Noireís gameplay is an evolution due to the way in which the many elements are mixed together, with the 3 pillars of the game and the whole thing comes together nearly perfectly.Investigation:
thereís a crime and you get a little vignette showing the murder/crime that takes place. These are done in true Noir style and youíre left wondering as to the ID of both the victim and the assailant. Eventually youíll end up at the crime scene and this is where the investigation pillar takes prominence. Unlike Heavy Rain youíre able to walk around the scene and interact with the clues as the Investigation Music plays in the background, and by interact you can move them around, examine an object for any tell-tale markings and solve interactive puzzles. Expect to examine the corpse as well, looking for clues on the body, markings, wallets and so on.
Not every clue in a scene is vital evidence and some of the clues are red herrings, youíll have to use your analytical skills to work out which is which though. Cole will give a verbal comment if you find a clue thatís nothing to do with the scene, or the crime. Most of the time though youíre going to have to figure it out on your own, even though you can get a hint by talking to your partner. You can also usually talk to people at the scene. Once you have tracked down all the clues, the music gives you a gentle reminder and fades down. Itís a subtle effect but it prevents you from poking around a scene for hours.
You also get a small vibration and a chime when youíre close to something that you can interact with, this gives you an idea that thereís a clue in the area.
If youíre stumped for ideas you can spend an Intuition Point that allows you to show the location of all clues on your mini-map. It still doesnít give you a fully accurate reading so you need to search around a little bit and find the right spot to pick up the clue from. Once youíre happy that youíve everything from the scene...you may be called to interrogate a witness.
Cole has a notebook and this is your lifeline, it stores all the information about the current case, people, locations and evidence in a handy format and itís fully accessible at any time with a press of the back button. From here you can review the notes that Coleís taken, see any clues with his commentary and catch a break via Intuition.Interrogation
: This pillar lets you ask the witness or suspect a series of questions, watch their facial and body reaction for the various tells. Make a choice between Lie, Doubt or Truth and hopefully learn something new about the case in question. This is one of the best features of the game and Iíve seen nothing like it before, it truly does work and it works really well. Cole has a series of questions you can pick from in the notebook based on clues and detective work that youíve done at the scene.
Then you must observe the person and watch their body and their face, if you ask them if theyíve had an affair and you found a note proving it for example, you can watch to see what they say. If they give you furtive glances, look worried, scratch their arm and so on...they might be lying, you can hit Y and accuse them. Be prepared to use the note as evidence and watch them squirm if you have it right. The music that plays after you use a successful piece of evidence is a clear indicator that youíve done the correct thing. If you get it wrong then expect the interview to go a totally different way. It might cause the suspect to shut down, clam up or become overly aggressive...perhaps even violent.
If theyíre lying and you donít have any proof, you can always press X (to Doubt) and if youíre correct, youíll know. If you really believe them you press ĎAí and accept what they said as truth. It might seem simple in the outset, but itís a very involved process and great fun to watch the actorís reactions. This game actually teaches you something about lies and the process that goes into a lie.
You can also spend an Intuition Point to clear a wrong answer, leaving you with two possible answers and as a side-effect it will also cross-out any wrong evidence pertaining to the interview in question. Itís a great system and it works so well that after a few cases you find that you have an intuition for this kind of thing and start to spot the tells.Action
: When things go south, the suspect becomes violent or thereís a need for a car chase or other kind of action scene this is where the game kicks into high gear. There are numerous ways that a case can play out based on your detection skills and interview technique, which provides a great amount of replay value since you can always see where a case can go by replaying it and making a few wrong decisions and missing some evidence here and there. You might get to tail a suspect, go incognito or rough them up a little in a back alley to get what you want. This is 1947 and the police handbook was different back then. If you fail at any of these, gunfights and car chases youíll get the option (as long as you have it on) to skip that scene and get on with the investigation.