Fallout: New Vegas Previews

A bunch more previews have surfaced from hands-on time with Fallout: New Vegas over at E3, though by now it's pretty obvious that the demo is fairly constricted, so each of these impression pieces has a lot of similar stuff to talk about.The 8th Circuit (thanks Ausir).
The environment is probably the biggest difference between New Vegas and 3 though, and it is a very noticable difference. While 3 was certainly big, it didn't quite have the feel of vast openness that the desert setting in Vegas has. There seems to be a greater focus on natural landmarks in the desert, as opposed to man-mande landmarks in 3. Overall, the map is purported to be the same size, if not a little bit bigger; which means that this vast openness is fitting, and players will certainly be doing a lot of exploring.
Digital Chumps.
Thankfully there was much more to the demo, as I was then transported to a different section of the game that focused more on combat. Currently allied with the New California Republic, I was tasked with infiltrating a stronghold of Caesar's Legion and executing their leader. I was also presented with the option of a companion, Boone, who arrived with far more options this time around. Use of the command wheel, which offered moderate degrees of control over Boone's behavior, was put to the task. We were supposed to be doing a sniper/rifle assault, but he failed to object when I suggest he go completely melee. It didn't make any sense, but my very ability to actually do that was what mattered.
Will Tuttle: Yes and no. Fallout: New Vegas is still a first-person role-playing game like Fallout 3, and many of the game mechanics are nearly identical to those found in Fallout 3. You still bring up and peruse your Pip-Boy page by page to change your weapon or set waypoints on the map, and the VATS system seems to be just about the same. The developers even said that they improved the first-person controls, so that players would have more fun playing it as a straight-up first-person shooter (that is, not using VATS).

However, if you're a longtime fan that hated the direction Bethesda went with Fallout 3, you'll be happy to hear that Obsidian hasn't turned its back on you. The development team is actually looking at New Vegas as the spiritual successor to the beloved Fallout 2, so old school fans can expect to see a ton of in-jokes and possibly even some old friends.
The overall impression of New Vegas was, however, that it has lost some - maybe most - of its predecessor's granduer and, because it's a follow up, that game's freshness. And next to Rage, it really doesn't stand a chance.
Within the confines of the walled off strip there are several casinos to peruse through as they gamble, cheat and work their way to earning riches. Win too much in one casino and players will be banned from participating in gambling. Not being able to bring in guns into the casino due to confiscation, players will never be kicked out or attacked due to cheating, but if they do end up leveling up their luck, they'll be able to walk away from the casino with a good amount of currency whether it is NCR dollars or Legion coins to spend in the in-game world.