Investigations start with a visit to the crime scene, which is where the adventure-game roots really begin to show. You can search the scene, pick up objects that might be of interest, scribble clues into your notebook and try to piece together the events that led to the crime. Often you’ll find evidence laid out for you at the scene when you arrive, from officers who arrived earlier. You can pick these items up and examine them in detail to find clues.
However, the real beauty of the game doesn’t come from its adventure aspects per se; it comes from interviewing witnesses and suspects. LA Noire makes use of brand new motion capture technology, a type of facial mapping called Depth Analysis. It’s pretty cool that technology so advanced is being used for the first time in Sydney, and it looks very promising. Too often in video games faces look fake, but LA Noire is about to set a new standard.
Using a few dozen cameras, it maps every millimetre of a person’s face and head, recognizing every movement, every twitch and every blink. All of the faces you see in the game are those of real actors, requiring make up for every piece of capture, so if you see someone in the game that has had their face beaten and bruised, the actor had to have make up done specifically for that scene. What you get from this, are the most realistic faces ever in a game, and you can definitely notice the difference, which is vital for the interviewing process.