‘LA Noire’ turns 10: Could Rockstar drop a ‘LA Noire 2’ this year?
Happy tenth birthday, L.A. Noire! Any chance we can get L.A. Noire 2 as part of the celebrations? No? Come on, we had to ask.
It’s rare when a property as successful as L.A. Noire doesn’t get a follow-up of some sort – whether you’re talking about a movie, a book, or a video game. And yet, here we are, ten years after the original release of the iconic detective adventure, and no sequel in sight. Unless there is a sequel in the works and we just don’t know about it. Could Rockstar have been developing L.A. Noire 2 under our noses this whole time?
You know, stranger things have happened. So what are the odds, really, that we could get L.A. Noire 2 this year? Let’s go over the game’s history and see where we land after that.
Changing the game
When L.A. Noire was released in May 2011, nobody had seen a game quite like it before. In fact, you could argue there hasn’t really been one like it since – which is why the idea of L.A. Noire 2 seems like a no-brainer. The game’s focus on detective work and careful observation made it stand apart from other open world releases, and an updated take on that type of gameplay would be much welcome.
In addition to those challenging interrogation sequences, L.A. Noire also featured realistic facial simulation at a time when we still weren’t used to seeing that type of motion capture in a game. If you happened to be a Mad Men fan (weren’t we all?) you got the extra kick of seeing Ken Cosgrove, Harry Crane, and other familiar faces as part of the very recognizable L.A. Noire cast.
And then there’s L.A. Noire’s classy, intoxicating 1940s atmosphere – and the cinematic way in which it was depicted. Even non-gamers have been known to enjoy L.A. Noire as a movie, basically by watching the cutscenes on YouTube. There’s a reason why the game was the first to ever be shown at the Tribeca Film Festival. It’s hard to imagine L.A. Noire 2 wouldn’t get the same honor.
One major roadblock to the development of L.A. Noire 2 is that Team Bondi, the team behind the original game, no longer exists. It was an ugly dissolution too, following controversial allegations of poor working conditions. Of course, that doesn’t mean Rockstar can’t put together a new team for the project. But would they be able to recapture the magic from the first L.A. Noire?
If nothing else, Rockstar isn’t shy about acknowledging how awesome L.A. Noire is, and bringing it up whenever it’s discussing the studio’s key properties. Back in the day, Rockstar executives even talked regularly about L.A. Noire 2 as something that would probably, almost surely, happen. Why would you refer to the title as a “franchise” if there’s really only one installment?
Alas, there hasn’t really been much progress on the sequel front over the last ten years. There have been a few ports of the game – most notably a VR take called L.A. Noire: The VR Case Files. That’s nice as bonus content, but it’s a far cry from an actual new game. It’s not L.A. Noire 2.
L.A. Noire 2 hopefuls got a twinge of excitement last March, when a reported leak seemed to indicate the long-awaited sequel was being developed in secret. A Reddit user accidentally discovered an intriguing video on YouTube uploaded by Warner Chappell Music. The video description read:
“Provided to YouTube by Take-Two Interactive Break My Stride – Matthew Wilder The Music of L.A. Noire Part Two 2020 Warner Chappell Music. Released on: 2020-03-13 Auto-generated by YouTube”.
Hmm. The video & channel were deleted soon after, but Reddit users were able to spot some L.A. Noir-related tunes before they were gone. And that was the last we heard about it. Doesn’t that sound like a mystery worthy of the detective skills we foster through video games like L.A. Noir?
Do you think we’ll ever see L.A. Noir 2? Let us know in the comments!