Tuesday, December 20, 2016

L. A. Noire: Los Angeles As It Likely Looked Driving Around in 1947

Video from "LA Noire - Random Cruising Along the Streets of Los Angeles" on Youtube by JayShockblast (2011)

It seems like every Christmas vacation starts out with a bout with the flu--this year is no exception.  So being brain dead, I've spent the past few days curled up on the couch watching my husband play "L.A. Noire," a 2011 game that entails a lot of driving around in 1947 Los Angeles.

Joseph Bernstein and Dan Nosowitz at Popular Science provide some insight in "How L.A. Noire Rebuilt 1940s Los Angeles Using Vintage Extreme Aerial Photography."  More interesting info about the game from Nathan Masters at KCET at How Archivists Helped Video Game Designers Recreate the City's Dark Side for 'L.A. Noire'.

Ever since I saw the first video games that allow users to run or drive around vast areas in the late 1990s, I've fantasized that maybe someday there will be programs that will allow me to drive around Philadelphia in 1810, or Cincinnati in 1830, or San Francisco in 1849, just to get a better idea of what my ancestors experienced while there.  Games like L.A. Noire make me think that might be possible at some point, using maps, city directories, and photographs.

© 2016 Copyright, Christine Manczuk, All Rights Reserved.

1 comment:

  1. Great! So its a game! I kept pausing it to see if I could identify where they were and what the makes and models were of the cars. I lived in LA in 1949 and remember a lot about it (I was 5). I got taken to the Ambassador Hotel restaurant once, which was very posh, and to the original Brown Derby a couple of times -- I loved that it was a hat. Also MacArthur Park, and the La Brea Tar Pits. I did not drive.