It's a trend I personally despise, since it screws the end user out of content, but major publishers offer retailer-specific pre-order bonuses for almost every big game nowadays. Today, Rockstar revealed the various in-game (and out-of-game) goodies you'll get if you put your money down ahead of time for its upcoming 1940s open-world crime thriller, L.A. Noire, at particular retailers.
As usual, GameStop seems like your best bet: if you pre-order there (PS3/360), you'll get an extra detective case from the LAPD Vice Desk, "The Naked City," as well as the Badge Pursuit Challenge, which, once completed, will provide you with an extra-ammo outfit for protagonist Cole Phelps. Amazon pre-orders (PS3/360) will receive a special costume, "The Broderick," a suit that ups your melee skills and damage resistance. (Amazon is also offering a $10 videogames credit.)
If you pre-order the game from Best Buy (PS3/360), or buy it in-store on launch day, you'll receive a suit called "The Sharpshooter"; as you might have guessed, it improves your accuracy with rifles and pistols. Do either of those things at Wal-Mart (PS3/360), and for your faith in L.A. Noire, the big-box retailer will give you "The Slip of the Tongue," a bonus case from the Traffic Desk. (Online pre-orders will also receive a $10 Walmart.com/samsclub.com eGift Card.)
Target will give you a $5 gift card if you pre-order from them (PS3/360), and if you buy the game in-store during launch week, you'll get a free Rockstar Games T-shirt. Rockstar itself is also offering clothing: a pre-order from Rockstar's official store (PS3/360), the Rockstar Warehouse, will net you an official L.A. Noire T-shirt (men's sizes S-2XL, women's sizes M-L).
Here's more info on the Amazon, Best Buy, GameStop, and Wal-Mart bonus content, straight from Rockstar:
“The Broderick” Detective Suit boosts your fist-fighting capabilities and resilience to damage. Throughout L.A. Noire while working cases, you’ll encounter quite a few suspects and persons of interest who prove to be resistant to arrest. Your hand-to-hand fighting skills will be called into action on these cases -- the Broderick suit with its enhanced fighting abilities may be that edge in helping make that collar.
Best Buy (Pre-Order)
“The Sharpshooter” Detective Suit enhances your aim with rifles and pistols. Always a worst case scenario for any detective working a case, there are of course those occasions for Cole Phelps when pursuing a suspect escalates to gunfire. In these tense shootouts, the Sharpshooter suit provides that extra aiming precision to take the criminal down.
GameStop/EB Games (Pre-Order)
‘The Naked City’ Vice Case
In this bonus case from L.A. Noire’s Vice Desk, detective Cole Phelps investigates the supposed suicide of a stunning fashion model. Can you help Cole unravel the truth in a city blighted by drugs, corruption and greed, where the death of a beautiful woman is never as straightforward as it seems?
The Badge Pursuit Challenge
Hidden around L.A. Noire’s beautiful recreation of 1947 Los Angeles are 20 police badges to find and collect. If you can find all 20 of these badges, the dapper Button Man suit will be unlocked which provides extra ammo for all weapons. Each badge also provides 5 additional XP which will help further unlock Intuition Points -- special credits that can be used to give Phelps a key investigative insight when you need it most.
Wal-Mart (Web Pre-Order or In-store Purchase on May 17)
“A Slip of the Tongue” Traffic Case is a bonus case from the Traffic Desk in which a seemingly run of the mill car theft ends up sparking an explosive investigation into the largest auto fraud racket the city has ever seen. With the stolen cars piling up and questionable characters at every turn, can you help Cole Phelps crack the biggest case so far in his career?
Check out the gallery below for some cool posters advertising the retailer-specific bonuses. L.A. Noire will be out for PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 on May 17th. You can see its box art here.