I don't know about you, but there's something alluring about forcing patrolling soldiers into a state of sleep and then dragging them into a big sexy pile of slumbering leather and muscle.
With Deus Ex: Human Revolution on the verge of release and Thief 4 surely a shoo-in for an E3 unveil, Eidos Montreal is suddenly the king of this very particular fetish. "We're starting to have a slumber party here!" underlines art director Jonathan Jacques-Belletete while he headlocks a sleeping guard into an even deeper state of unconsciousness.
Mr Jacques-Belletete is giving us a run-through of an early-mid game Human Revolution mission, however, so he doesn't go as far as draping the guard's body over those of his tranq-struck comrades in the hope that (if discovered and woken) they'll get in trouble for nuzzling groin on duty.
That's for another time. Adam Jensen is on a mission, and there's precious little time to make FEMA grunts question their own sexuality.
As this level opens, Jensen seems closer than ever to picking up the threads of a conspiracy that might, just might, go right to the very top. "A lot of the Detroit city hub is about discovering what happened at your company, when Sarif Industries got attacked by those shadowy mercenaries. It's the beginning of the conspiracy," explains Jacques-Belletete, before describing our gravel-voiced hero's recent exploits.
The previous mission, previously shown to the press and the world at large at last year's Cologne games show, saw Jensen take a brain chip from the head of a hacker in a police morgue that is (depending on the way you played it) now filled with somewhat socially charmed people, forcibly snoozing people or lots of dead people. Well, more dead people than usual.
"When you retrieve the chip," continues Jacques-Belletete, "Pritchard, the tech and IT guy analyses it and there's a signal that's sent and it pings in the textiles district. That's an old, run-down and abandoned sector. You're like, 'Why? Has someone crashed there? Has some guy died there?' It makes no sense."
The IT department having worked their on/off magic, then, Jensen jumps on board his standard-issue Deus Ex futuro-chopper in this prequel piloted by a nice lady called Faridah rather than an infant Jock and starts his investigations.
The second Jensen is spotted stepping lightly (or perhaps heavily, if you've augmented him in that direction) on the pavements of Detroit's textiles district it's clear that this is a game of true Deus Ex vintage.
There's something about the width of the courtyard, the lighting and the unhurried pace of Jensen's exploration that screams Deus Ex. There's even something wonderful and familiar in the way that Jensen is framed while his gruff bass tones are intercut with the people he questions.
I truly and honestly don't mean this as an insult, but the conversation Jensen has with an African American gun salesman near the landing site is a little stilted in a fashion that's endearingly Deus Ex-y.
As could, perhaps, be expected, the abandoned warehouses of the textile district aren't entirely abandoned. Soldiers patrol areas packed with military vehicles and suspicious-looking crates their routes unpredictable, and their propensity to twist around and look behind them truly alarming as Jensen rolls from cover to cover.
Their behaviour and motions look and feel real making it thrilling to avoid them, and presumably even more satisfying to peck them with a sniped tranquiliser, wait a few seconds and watch them collapse.
There are five or six different ways to tackle this secret enemy detention centre, seemingly still under construction but now being hastily abandoned due to Jensen's investigations elsewhere in Detroit.
Jacques-Belletete, however, is opting for his own brand of through-the-front-door stealth. Cloak is engaged, sound dampening is utilised, X-ray vision is used to spot nearby terminals, cameras are disabled temporarily with the stun gun and a trail of sleepy-dreamy-nighty-snoozy-snoozing guards are left in his wake. (If not, sadly, in the aforementioned manly versions of body-stacks first made famous by Razzle.)
Lethal weapons make more noise, as does the lack of screaming, so enemy weapons are admired but rarely touched or placed within the game's Resident Evil 4-style grid inventory.
If he was taking a more hostile approach, he could use an attachment on his maxed-out Combat Rifle firing flechettes into the white targets that a high-level attachment provides and seeing them curve around corners and over barriers to loudly strike hidden enemies.
As it is, however, this incursion is one in which Jensen routinely tags his enemies (up to seven of them, in true Crysis fashion) and watches their wanderings and patrols either sneaking past, debilitating them or creeping up behind them for a cheeky stranglehold.
While he sneaks through offices incapacitating the nightshift, crawling over rooftops, along gantries and around piles of equipment that you cannot help but assume are in some way vaguely incriminating, Jacques-Belletete explains how the game has been tweaked in accordance with the wishes of both press and community.
As has been widely reported, for example, the feature that highlights items of note wherever Jensen roams has been made optional but on top of that, leaping into cover can now be a toggle rather than a continually pressed button, the easy 'Tell me a story' difficulty mode has been given firmer stabilisers, and the feel and accuracy of shooting has apparently been greatly improved.
It's all hugely impressive stuff and as a great glass elevator takes Jensen from the warehouse top level down through floor after floor of soldiers trooping in formation, mechs stomping over concrete, prison blocks and basic evidence of FEMA mischief (unless of course, as is Deus Ex's wont, they turn out to be the good guys) it's made clear that this is a conspiracy that goes all the way to the bottom, as well as the top.
That's a lot of conspiracy here, even for a Deus Ex game, and most of it is heavily augmented and is holding a big gun.
Once the presentation of the FEMA detention camp was over, a shiny DVD of playable code was frisbeed between my teeth immaculately timed on the behalf of the Square Enix PR team between my excitable yaps. As such I'll be playing the first 10 hours of the game and writing up my thoughts over the coming weeks for a preview that'll go live on 11th May, but would love to consider and answer any queries fired at me from Deus Ex fans and agnostics alike as I play.
So if you have any remaining questions, fears or as yet unfounded glib remarks on Deus Ex: Human Revolution that you need confirmed, then shout them in the comments thread provided below, or tweet me at @Batsphinx. Here's hoping the game is the barnstormer it appears to be.