Pre-rendered graphics weren't only used in complex cinematic cutscenes back in the day when a game's own 3D engine couldn't do the job. Developers also used them as in-game backgrounds to bypass graphical limitations. And some of the games had really well-made, atmospheric pre-rendered backgrounds.
Squaresoft and Capcom preferred these a lot in their PS1 games in the late 90s, but it wasn't just them. With minor differences—some games had a combat screen in full 3D, for instance—other developers also took advantage of this method.
And it had a good run, until video game engines started to become much more powerful and were able to handle camera angle changes and real-time rendering.
Final Fantasy VII
Final Fantasy VIII
Final Fantasy IX
Resident Evil 2
Resident Evil 3: Nemesis
Odium / Gorky 17
Dino Crisis 2
The Legend of Dragoon
What is your favorite background from these games or one that's missing from our list? Make sure to submit them in the comments below!
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