I just started learning Maya, and I'm following a tutorial. I'm trying to model a robot, but and I when I try to select a single veracity, (after right clicking and selecting vertex), it highlights them in a gold / orange color instead of just yellow. It doesn't let me select single vertices. What am I doing wrong?
nothing wrong man, once again, that's the soft selection feature on the transform tools, press B to toggle that off and on, and you are selecting everything because the falloff on the soft selection is very big and covers the whole object, if you keep the B key pressed you can set the size of the falloff with your mouse, or just press B to toggle it.
The reason why Maya is highlighting vertexes and edges this way is because you are soft-selecting. To turn soft selection off you can simply press "b" on your keyboard. The option itself is located in the Tool settings menu of the select/move/rotate/scale tools (simple check box followed by the options for the soft selection). I hope that solves your problem.