The gumshoes head to the hospital to see young Jessica. At anytime you can check your notebook, which contains all evidence you've found, people you've met and leads you need to explore. You can also talk to your partner whenever you like and he'll give you help - not in a super-direct 'maybe you should do that again' kinda way, but more to give you genuine advice on what's happening. It's this option that advises Phelps to treat Jessica with care as she's shook up.
You can't help but feel for the deluded young girl, not just because her story of achieving star status means everything to her but because her model is so realistic. You almost want to reach in the screen and give her a hug to let her know it's going to be alright. Just another example of the incredible facial mapping that has gone into L.A. Noire.
Above: Lead man, Cole Phelps as a beat cop. A bad-ass looking, shotgun-wielding, beat cop
If it seems a bit too pedestrian for your liking then the next bits of the mission might be up your street. Phelps races to the scene of a suspect as he's got wind that June Ballard's bad ass husband is sending goons to mash up chief suspect, movie producer, Mark Bishop. Phelps and Bekowsky rough up the hired-muscle ( which looks rather meaty) before interrogating Mrs Bishop and then racing to a prop house to investigate an infamous casting couch, which doubles as a porn set for unsuspecting actresses.
There's an adrenaline-fuelled chase through the streets of L.A. as hitmen try to take you out and even a good ol' fashioned shootout on a movie set, which fits perfectly into the game and crucially doesn't feel crow-barred in. Think Red Dead Redemption levels of action and you're on the right track.
Above: The attention to detail in recreating 40's L.A. is nothing short of brilliant
I know it may seem we've rushed the final bit of the mission, but it's worth the gap in knowledge so that you can fully appreciate L.A. Noire when it releases in 2011.
I will divulge that the much-publicised, MotionScan technology, is awesome. For L.A. Noire to be an accurate detective-sim it needed the facial expressions to be spot on and this ground-breaking technology is perfect for doing just that. If you've ever watched Mad Men then you'll recognise several folk from the series because Rockstar used the same actor's agency as the award-winning show. This includes thousands of words of dialogue, hours of motion capture and of course time in the studio with the MotionScan. The result will be the benchmark for all games that follow.
Above: As well as interogating people on the streets you'll also do it down at the precinct. Time for a punching?
As it is, L.A. Noire may take some people by surprise. Mostly the people that see the Rockstar name on the box and expect balls-out, gun-filled action. It looks far more concentrated than GTA and the direction that Team Bondi have taken it will play up to the fans of Heavy Rain as it's similarly story-driven. There are a few blots on it's early record, like the escalation of events at one part of the mission where you're talking to some goons only for a full-on car chase with guns erupting seconds later, but it's a small flaw in what is otherwise shaping up to be a stunner for 2011.
18th November 2010