As this is a Tear Jerker page, spoilers will be left unmarked. You Have Been Warned!L.A. Noire
is a downbeat Film Noir videogame
set in Los Angeles
in the late 1940's. As is usual for the genre, there's a lot of sadness and despair to be had.
- The families killed in house fires set by a real estate developer trying to make a quick buck on land to be purchased for a freeway is a real downer, especially the second family which, due to tightening of the muscles and tendons, end up in a prayer pose.
- When the father collapses, his head rolling on the floor, Biggs flees, reminded of his dead Marine comrades.
- Who didn't tear up at Ira's "You said the house would be empty! I heard them screaming!"
- Cole Phelps' death and the subsequent coverup.
- The scene with Mrs. Phelps after Cole's affair is made public, and Cole's reaction to the situation. He didn't try to deny it or beg forgiveness, he tried to justify himself and asked to see his daughters. It's awful to see the "Golden Boy" Phelps make such an awful mistake and hurt his family like that.
- It's hard not to feel for James Tiernan when he starts tearing up during his interrogation. Especially considering how young he is. Makes you hate McCaffrey even more for putting him through such awful guilt by convincing him he killed Evelyn.
- Kelso having to kill Ira in the sewers.
- One side quest has you chasing a crazy guy up onto a rooftop. The "correct" solution is to watch him jump. The look on Cole's face in the closing cutscene is heart-wrenching, and damn near accusatory. (There's a happier alternate solution, but it boils down to a Moon Logic Puzzle.)
- Ever wondered why there's an abandoned shack filled with hundreds of small paper origami? Well, according to a Japanese legend, if you made a thousand of these, you will be granted a single wish. Now, this cabin belongs to Ira Hogeboom, who, during the battle of Okinawa in the Pacific Theater, accidentally lit up a cave full of Japanese civilians, causing a long chain of mental breakdown where he goes mad from grief and remorse. If you add up all the evidence, this is a horribly shell-shocked veteran who is hoping beyond hope that there's a chance that this old Japanese legend is, in fact, true and will not cease making the origami.
- Among the final lines in the game:
Biggs: You were never his friend, Jack.
Kelso: I guess you're right. Herschel?
Biggs: Yeah, Jack?
Kelso: I was never his enemy.
Biggs: I think he knew that, Jack.
- The ending flashback, in which Jack begs his Marine buddies to not deal drugs, because it'll shame their military service. It doesn't work, leading to the events of the game.
- Poor, poor Jacob Henry. He married Celine on a furlough from the army and she ended up turning into a depressive, violent, alcoholic cheat who would attack him physically. Despite all of this, he still worked hard to provide for her and loved her with all his heart, only ever striking her because she was literally coming at him with a frying pan . This being The '40s, the Double Standard is in full effect here, and he's given absolutely no sympathy for the abuse he suffered at his wife's hands. Even the normally progressively-minded Cole Phelps seems to think of him as more pitiful than anything, calling him a "weak fucking sister" during his interrogation.
- The Homicide desk in general is a series of these when they're not Nightmare Fuel. Cole inevitably has to tell the friends and families of the victims that they have been murdered, and almost every time you have to endure a variety of people reacting in shock or grief. You suspect a lot of them as the killer at the time, but after The Reveal it's not hard to feel bad for all the husbands who were actually innocent and probably have to live with the guilt of hurting their wives right before they were killed. Even those who were on the outs with their wives are likely regretting wishing they'd just disappear.
- The ones with children can be hard to watch, with Deidre Moller's daughter in particular breaking down in tears and having to deal with her father getting arrested as a suspect on top of learning her mother has been killed, which had been directly preceded by a particularly bad argument according to her.