The new issue of Offical PlayStation2 Magazine in the UK which goes on sale June 17th will have a 13 page preview of SanAn. From the various scans of it circulating the intraweb, there seems to be no shortage of new info and pics in it either. Here's a brief run-down on some of the new stuff mentioned and pictured:
- Cops on bikes, finally. From the pics, they remind me of the old TV show CHiPs.
- Police (and presumably other peds) can grab onto cars and hang on while they drive away.
- Load screens will only be present when entering buildings. Not really new info, as I knew this for months; but that was off-the-record...
- To further allow players to customize their on-screen avatar, we'll be able to get different haircuts from a barber shop. Anyone want to place bets on there being *lots* of user screens featuring a fat Carl with a 'fro and a wifebeater?
- The game engine will use a few procedural tricks for rendering plants and such to make the countryside feel more organic. Or, in plain English, just think of how the grass and other foliage in games like UT2k4 are dynamically rendered on-the-fly.
- There will be chances for players to use shadows to approach missions more stealthily, a la Manhunt. The same shadows will also come in handy for ditching cops.
- In the article, Dan Houser emphasizes that while the map is enormous, it will still be filled with unique and detailed buildings all about. In other words, there's no need to worry about the game being a mess of blurry repeating buildings as was the case in that other game.
- Each of the cities appear as if they'll have their own police force. All the pictures of cops in the article feature LSPD decals, so one can only assume they will change to match each city.
- Peds will react differently to you depending on how you look. Get a bad haircut, and they might make fun of you for it.
- At the game's beginning, CJ is picked up from the airport by the two shady cops (Eddie Polaski & Frank Tenpenny), who then drop him off in an opposing gang's turf. To get away, players will have to grab one of the new BMX bikes, and pedal their way to safety. Pedalling is re-confirmed as being a matter of rapidly mashing the X button.
There's quite a bit of other new info to be seen- as well as the new screenshots- so if you're able to find this magazine in your area, pick it up.