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Nipton is not doing well at all in the world of New Vegas. When I happened upon the sleepy desert town, the dusty streets were lined with people tied to crucifixes. Yikes. Approaching the town hall, I was set upon by a band of Caesar's Legion soldiers.
The leader of the group was named Vulpes Inculta, and he told the dark story of Nipton. Apparently the city was overrun with gamblers, thieves and prostitutes. Vulpes came in and decided to "save" the lot of them by holding a lottery. Winners of the lottery would be strung up, the rest would become slaves. Vulpes seemed pretty proud of this, even though his men managed to turn Nipton into a ghost town. Thankfully I was able to talk them out of stringing me up (they had me seriously out-gunned), and Vulpes went on his way. Bethesda's producer on "New Vegas," Jason Bergman, said that Vulpes returns throughout the game, and offers missions similar to what we saw in the Dark Brotherhood of "Oblivion."”
Crafting will play a much larger role in Fallout: New Vegas than in Fallout 3 with dozens of recipes available. Players will be crafting ammo, guns, and cook up items from those numerous body parts collected from slain wildlife. It's a nice change of pace from only being able to create the spectacularly unique weapons and should help in the game's optional "Hardcore" mode, which will certainly increase the player's reliance on getting everything they can out of the game's items.
In my brief hands-on time, there main quests I came into contact with seemed well designed and nuanced, while some of the side quests came off a little generic for my taste. In one bar, two NPC's standing next to each other both handed me functionally identical quests--go out into the surrounding area and find three specific NPCs--with different objectives and story content. Hopefully, this represents a rare occurrence as a game like this will live or die by its quest diversity. I only had about an hour and a half to play, so I'm not too worried at this point.”