The more I read about LA Noire the more I want to play it. The article at LA Times is a solid read on how much work was put into making sure this was a historically accurate 1947 Los Angeles.
Assembling an accurate virtual city became a massive scavenger hunt. (Simon) Wood and [Team Bondi] started at the Huntington Library, digitally stitching together scanned Works Progress Administration maps from the 1930s to create a sprawling cityscape, with commercial and residential zones distinguished by color. They overlaid topographical information from the U.S. Geological Survey to delineate elevations.
After that, the team crossed town to raid UCLA's Spence Air Photos collection — an aerial history of L.A. inadvertently created by Robert Spence, hired by the city's rich to lean out of a biplane with a 46-pound camera and photograph their mansions. But Spence didn't just document upscale real estate: His 50 years in the sky captured the filming of Cecil B. DeMille's “Ben-Hur,” the rise of downtown's skyscrapers and more. “It was better than satellite photography,” Wood says. “Like the CIA, we analyzed hot spots. Where the quiet streets were. How many vehicles were on the road. The angle of the sun at different times of the day. Trolley car routes.”
[LA Times via Joystiq]