I didn't even realize it until now, but in addition to their hefty 4 page preview of Fallout 3, IGN video-interviewed Executive Producer Todd Howard. Here are some highlights that I have transcribed:
IGN: One thing you've done, though, that's sort of a radical departure, is change the perspective of the game. Instead of being a sort of isometric, tactical game, it's got a little more of a action kind of shooter presentation. Why did you decide to make that change?
Todd Howard: I mean, there's still some tactical stuff in it. It's really what excites us in terms of what's going to have the biggest impact to you when you're playing this game and you're this character. So that's the main reason for first person - is that, you know, I want you to touch the world and make it feel real, and I just think the emotion impact of that is much greater. But then, I mean, you can really pull the camera back in third person and play it that way if you want to get a better sense of your surroundings. So we've spent a lot of time on the third-person, over the shoulder stuff.
I think there's a difference between first person and action. I think people confuse them, whereas, you know what kind of behavior are you rewarding. Are you rewarding a person who's got really good reflexes, or you're just presenting the game that way? So for us, we, you know, try very hard - just like, that's how the game is presented, but it's not rewarding you you as a twitch player.
IGN: Having funs who are so rabid for the game is kind of a blessing and a curse, and reviving a franchise is always a little risky. Is there anything you're particularly worried about with this game or that you feel like "Wow, we're really taking a risk here. I wonder if it's gonna pay off."
Todd Howard: Umm...I think the combat system is a bit risky. I mean, it's one of those things where a lot of people might think the game is something it's not. They might get it and think they're getting a shooter, and then they're like "This isn't a shooter, I don't understand it." But that's there fault not mine, heh. Other things that are risky. I dunno..I think with anything it's very subjective. There are people that are gonna go "Oh I think that looks awesome" and people who'll go "That's not what I want." You know, at the end of the day, we just gotta do what excites us the most, and what we would really want to play. And, you know, we have lots of really strong opinons here on all sides of the fence. I guess my only concern is that people won't really get it for what it is, that they might confuse it with something on either side of the spectrum too much, and then when they buy it, they're let down in some way that we didn't expect.
Watch (or download) the whole thing here.