Nice work James! The lighting really makes the sell. I've yet to be fortunate to work on a game that requires normal maps. Been working on the Wii for the past few years. I'd love to pick your brain about what you look for when you are building normal maps and the like.
Most of the new next gen models are my own not from a published game. Im pretty much self taught in that aspect check out my links you will find the info you seek :)