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1* The UsefulNotes/{{NES}} could deliver surprisingly impressive effects in the right hands.** ''[[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zoBIOi00sEI&NR=1 Elite]]''. That's right, those are honest-to-God 3D vector graphics ''on an NES''.** ''The 3D Battles of Worldrunner'' is another NES showcase with impressive mode 7-esque environments and scaling sprites.** ''Kirby's Adventure'' is an all around graphics-pusher for the NES, with the most famous part being the 3D rotating tower in Butter Building.** ''Vice: Project Doom'' on the NES has a train stage with a whopping 8 layers of parallax scrolling in the background. Keep in the mind, the NES did not have that by default, and it had to be done in-software!** ''Batman: Return of the Joker'' is a true hardware pusher that has large, detailed and fluid animation combined with parallax scrolling. It could easily be passed off as an early Sega Genesis title.** The video game adaptation of ''Willow'' has such an impressive number of sprites on-screen and such vivid sprites and use of color, that people have favorably compared it to the graphics of ''A Link to the Past'' on SNES!** EA's ''The Immortal'', which has some of the largest and most detailed spritework ever done on it.* You'd think the UsefulNotes/GameBoy, which had hardware that was primitive even for its time and was stuck with a meager palette of four shades of gray, wouldn't have much to offer in the visuals department, but you'd be surprised!** ''Faceball 2000'' is a FPS game with pseudo 3D environments done in ''1991''--and months before ''Wolfenstein 3D'' came out, at that. And it can support up to 16 players at once! ** ''V-Rally'' seamlessly imitates mode 7 style scaling and rotation while maintaining an oil smooth framerate. ** ''Jeep Jamboree'', ''Bill Elliot's Nascar Fast Tracks'' and ''Days of Thunder'' (the latter being made by Argonaut Software) were likewise ambitious attempts at achieving pseudo 3D racing environments on the handheld.** The port of ''Race Drivin'' was an ambitious attempt to transition the arcade games 3D graphics into sprite form, and it does a very impressive job of giving the illusion of playing in real 3D, even if the framerate was slow and clunky as a result.** The obscure game ''X'' achieves fluid and convincing ''Elite'' style 3D vector graphics on hardware that shouldnt possibly be able to support such a thing.** But surpassing all of the above is the 2011 homebrew port of ''Stunt Race FX'', which delivers big, detailed sprites and animation with faux-3D environments, and all while maintaining a solid, fluid framerate!** The ''Donkey Kong Land'' trilogy successfully managed to transition the fluid, pre rendered 3D sprites of the Donkey Kong Country games onto the handheld.* The Game Boy Color had some showstopper titles too. ** The handhelds port of ''Donkey Kong Country'' surpasses even the example set by the ''Land'' trilogy.** [[https://youtu.be/Z8nLpO-WaUs Toy Story Racing]] has pseudo 3D courses that are so convincing that you'd swear they were done in real time 3D! * The UsefulNotes/GameBoyAdvance was a powerful handheld, basically a portable Super Nintendo, and many games took advantage of this.** Some of the most ambitious titles attempted 3D style sprites or even went the extra mile and did games with real time 3D. ''Kill Switch'' (a third person cover shooter), ''ATV Thunder Ridge Riders', ''Driv3r'', ''Star X'', ''Super Monkey Ball Jr.'', ''Tony Hawks Downhill Jam'' and ''Asterix & Obelix XXL'' (a 3D platformer that comes close to looking like a portable Nintendo 64 game) are the best examples of this.* The UsefulNotes/SegaGenesis in general, with or without add-ons, was a respectable powerhouse in of itself. Its flagship ''Sonic'' games are its most famous examples, but there are many other technical showcases for the console.** The game ''VideoGame/RedZone'' is one of the shining examples of just how powerful the hardware was on it's own when pushed to its limits. The intro actually ''brags'' about all of the games technical achievements and how they were all achieved ''without'' add-ons or enhancement chips. It has smooth scaling and rotation for both sprites and backgrounds and for the time amazing 3D vector objects, all while maintaining an oil smooth framerate. It even has an '''FMV opening''', something that even Sega themselves thought was impossible to achieve on the console!** The games ''Zero Tolerance'', the port of ''Duke Nukem 3D'' and the [[https://youtu.be/e2wBHfVYf8U homebrew port of Wolfenstein 3D]] all pull off smooth 3D FPS environmemts with scaling and rotation effects, which are all done in-software! ** ''Res Q'' has bonus stages done entirely in real time 3D akin to the original ''Star Fox'', and ''Hard Drivin'' and ''Star Cruiser'' are done in real time 3D as well. Bear in mind that both of these were achieved in-software, with no enhancement chips or add-ons.** ''Virtua Racing'' was another showcase title done entirely in 3D. And thanks to the Sega Virtua Processor chip, it has models and a smooth framerate that even put the SNES showcase ''Star Fox'' to shame. The Sega 32X port, ''Virtua Racing Deluxe'', made it look even better.** To say nothing of [[https://youtu.be/UuYFmIEtLLk the homebrew port of]] ''Star Fox'', which runs a successful imitation of the game on Genesis software, and without any enhancement chips!** Travellers Tales video game adaptation of ''Toy Story'' not only uses amazing prerendered sprites, but even has a full blown 3D first person level ala ''Doom''.** ''Mickey Mania'' famously has faux-mode 7, sprite rotation and 3D effects done in-software in levels like ''Moose Hunters'', ''Lonesome Ghosts'' and ''The Mad Doctor''. And to say nothing of the fluid hand-animated sprites.** ''The Adventures of Batman and Robin'' employs 3D backgrounds that are so convincing at points it feels like you're playing an early [=PlayStation=] game!* The [[UsefulNotes/OtherSegaSystems Sega CD]] may have squandered a lot of its potential on dated and grainy FMV games, but in the right hands the add-on could deliver an incredible visual experience.** The port of ''VideoGame/{{Silpheed}}'' is a showstopping title that not only displays real time 3D with the playable ship and enemies, but seamlessly blends them with the FMV backgrounds. ** ''Stellar Fire'' and the port of ''Starblade'' likewise achieved, for the time impressive, real time 3D on the hardware.** The Sega CD was capable of sprite scaling, rotation and mode 7 and was more than keen to show it off. The ''Batman'' tie-in games and the shoot em up ''Soul Star'' have some of the most immersive and impressive use of them.** Bloodshot pulls up an impressive ''Doom'' style FPS experience on the hardware as well.* The Sega 32X add-on is not a well regarded piece of hardware and for good reason, but it did achieve some impressive visuals in its best games. ** The port of ''Doom'' actually looks superior to its SNES counterpart. ** The ports of ''Space Harrier'', ''Afterburner'' and ''Mortal Kombat II'' are near arcade perfect ports and look stunning in presentation. The port of ''Virtua Fighter'' and ''Star Wars Arcade'', along with ''Darxide'' and ''Shadow Squadron'', were real showcases of the potential the 32X had for 3D graphics.** Games like ''Tempo'', ''Kolibri'' and ''Knuckles Chaotix'' tried hard to show off the fact that the 32X could display 32,000 colors with no on-screen limit. Even if the results tended to look garish, it was a big technical step up from what either the Genesis of SNES could do with their color palette restrictions.* The Sega UsefulNotes/GameGear was no slounch in the sprite department either since its basically a portable and souped up UsefulNotes/SegaMasterSystem.** ''Arena: Maze of Death'' is an impressive isometric shooter game with spritework and a color palette so impressive that it could easily be passed off as a Sega Genesis title at a glance.** ''VideoGame/SonicBlast'', the second to last game released for the handheld, has large pre rendered 3D sprites ala Donkey Kong Country, making it one of the most ambitious looking titles for the handheld, even if it wasnt the most fun to play.* The UsefulNotes/SuperNintendoEntertainmentSystem was likewise a powerful piece of hardware that consistently delivered the goods and then some.** Thanks to its built-in Mode 7 capabilities, racing games like ''Super Mario Kart'' and ''Touge Densetsu-Saisoku Battle'' had oil-smooth, faux-3D racing environments to drive around. Other driving games like ''Super Off-Road: The Baja'' and ''Speed Racer: My Most Dangerous Adventure'' took it further by including the illlusion of hills and inclines thru their courses. Games like the ''Super Star Wars'' trilogy made liberal use of it to stunning effect in vehicle and space battles.** ''VideoGame/SuperCastlevaniaIV'' has the spinning room from 4-3. Its only a brief background setpiece, but its an unforgettable use of the SNES mode 7 effect that gives a disturbingly convinging illusion of 3D--[[NauseaFuel maybe]] ''[[NauseaFuel too]]'' [[NauseaFuel convincing]] to some.** Any of the games equipped with the Super FX chip, most famously the original ''VideoGame/{{Star Fox|1}}'', which made achieving then-revolutionary 3D graphics possible on the SNES.*** ''VideoGame/StuntRaceFX'' went further than ''Star Fox'' by rendering an entire worldspace in polygonal 3D. More, the Big Ravine course features rain that splatters on the screen when driving in first-person view, and actually distorts the view through them a little.** The original ''VideoGame/DonkeyKongCountry'' trilogy looks amazing to this day due to the [[DigitizedSprites pre-rendered CGI sprites]] and environments and vivid color palette. Most amazing is that they did ''not'' use the Super FX chip or any other enhancement chips--everything is done in-software!* Blizzard is well known for their excellent cinematic work, but ''VideoGame/DiabloIII'' sets a high water mark not just for video games but for motion picture animation as well!* ''VideoGame/{{Journey}}''. Just look at a screenshot or video of it, you'll see what we mean.* While it seems dated now, the second level in ''VideoGame/{{Unreal}}'' was, for the time, nothing short of ''mindblowing''. The first level was a rather standard, if well-done indoors level, which would not look out-of-place in ''VideoGame/{{Quake}}''. Then, the second level, you step out of the ship into a massive, outdoors world, with no clipping or fog to be seen. The sheer difference is amazing, even now. Back then, when even the best graphics designers in the game industry where still playing with shades of brown and green and talking about "polygon counts", here comes a lush, fully 3D jungle environment in believable color. For anyone that was into PC gaming at the time, no other game graphics triumph has ever come close, mere logical progressions to Unreal's quantum leap.** ''VideoGame/UnrealTournament''. [[SceneryPorn Facing Worlds.]]* ''VideoGame/Wolfenstein3D''. Real-time, texture-mapped 3D rendering on a 286 PC with stock VGA graphics -- something that didn't even have a ''blitter'', much less any sort of UsefulNotes/PolygonalGraphics hardware. Back in 1992, ''that'' was mindblowing, especially considering how weak a 286 was even then.* In 1993, expanding on the visual features that ''VideoGame/Wolfenstein3D'' brought, ''VideoGame/{{Doom}}'' added flats (floor/ceiling textures), height and light-level variation, and a variety of sector-based effects that, combined with the realistic and gritty artwork, looked ''amazing''. Other idtech1 games, especially VideoGame/{{Hexen}}, added even more features such as horizontally-moving doors (polyobjects), fog, translucency, and scripted events to further the immersion.* ''VideoGame/{{Gradius}} Gaiden'', stage 7. A seemingly ordinary [[NostalgiaLevel volcano stage]] getting sucked into a black hole, rock by rock, along with enemies, their projectiles, and your own missiles. And with very little slowdown too, [[NoBackwardsCompatibilityInTheFuture unless you're playing on a PlayStation 2]].* While the in-game graphics for ''VideoGame/WarhammerMarkOfChaos'' are ho-hum for the time (2006), [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e3pOljQqvX8 the opening cinematic]] holds up well even a decade after-the-fact.* ''VideoGame/MassEffect1'''s space scenes were good, but less than mind-blowing: the technical "graphics" of the game had been toned down to fin the massive amount of content. ''Mass Effect 2'', however, spanned 15 GB on the PC and 2 disks for the 360. The graphics, particularly those that apply to people speaking, were stunning.** What stood out was the planet from the Normandy Crash Pack DLC. It's a beautiful ice planet, with the low sunlight creating areas of both light and dark, the stars visible in the sky, and some aurorae just for good measure.** Used in the Overlord DLC, in which the Firewalker's VI prompts you to look out at the scenery when "Sensors indicate that an aesthetically pleasing view" is nearby.** Really, almost every environment and location in ''VideoGame/MassEffect2'' looks excellent. [[SceneryPorn Illium and Omega in particular are breathtaking and also have an awesome sci-fi feel to them.]] [[LampshadeHanging You get to discuss the view on Illium with something like half your teammates]]. Some of the downloadable content also has some outstanding environments. [[spoiler:The Shadow Broker's ship in Lair of the Shadow Broker and seeing the Mass Relay get closer and closer in The Arrival.]]** The entire '[[DoomedHometown Escape from Earth]]' scene in ''VideoGame/MassEffect3''. As the Normandy lifts off, you see Anderson running back to the soldiers from earlier. The camera pans across the wreckage of Vancouver, and you see shuttles being loaded with survivors (including Vent Boy). As the shuttles life off, a Reaper destroyer shoots them down with its main gun. As the Normandy flies away, you can see more Reapers landing on Vancouver, and the wreckage of the Fourth Fleet falling from the sky and burning up in the atmosphere. It's gorgeously rendered, and a brilliant TearJerker, set to a [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KGHA9oO1Ybg hauntingly sad]] LonelyPianoPiece.*** Menae is utterly ''breathtaking''. As you make your way across the moon, you can see Reaper capital ships stomping across the surface off in the distance, and watch as husks attack the smaller turian outposts. And off in the distance, you can see the world of Palaven burning.*** Then there's Thessia which manages to be both SceneryPorn and SceneryGorn at the same time. The architecture and skyline through the mission is utterly gorgeous with an almost Roman/Greek look but with a futuristic feeling, and combined with total destructions as the Reapers lay waste to democratic center of the galaxy.*** The bits of Rannoch that aren't covered with geth. No wonder the quarians were so gung-ho to get it back.* In ''Tokyo Xtreme Racer 3''/''Shutokou Battle 01'', the boss Blood Hound, when challenged in the rain, causes the rain to ''turn into [[RainOfBlood blood]]''. Rejected Angel, when battled, results in a dramatic shift of the screen's tones and the ''Saint Elmo's Fire'' effect to appear when going up to higher speeds.* ''VideoGame/CastlevaniaSymphonyOfTheNight'' brings us Alucard, who at the time of the game's release captivated gamers with his sprite animations. ''Especially'' his cape.** Go to Spriters Resource or such and look at his sprite sheet. There are about 30 frames for his running animation.* ''VideoGame/{{Crysis}}'' is a game that lives and breathes this. There is a reason 'Does it run Crysis?' meme is stil relevant even after 12 years after it was released!** ''Crysis 2'' is excellently described by its producers as "catastrophically beautiful".*** And ''VideoGame/Crysis3'' managed to surpass ''[[BeyondTheImpossible both of them]]''!* ''VideoGame/{{Uncharted}}'' is one of the few seventh-gen shooters to avert RealIsBrown, and it looks ''[[SceneryPorn amazing]]''.** ''VideoGame/Uncharted3DrakesDeception'' has mind-blowingly gorgeous scenery, from a mansion burning to the ground around you to firefights in a sinking abandoned cruise ship, which as it starts to fill turns the entire environment sideways. In the special features, it was mentioned that waves were in fact rendered in real-time. You're fighting on a ship that is rocking on ''actual waves''. The desert scenery is similarly beautiful.*** Special mention goes to the facial expressions. They could have used motion capture, since they already had the actors playing the scenes. But no, they animated the expressions from scratch, and the UncannyValley is mostly avoided with only a few major exceptions.*** "Creator/NaughtyDog outdoing themselves with the third game"? Hm. [[Videogame/CrashBandicoot3Warped Sounds familiar.]][[note]] Without counting [[Videogame/CrashBandicoot1996 the first game]], of course. On the other hand, some levels in "CB 3: Warped" are, for lack of better words, ''gorgeous.''[[/note]] *** The secret jetski level and the boneyard levels are a few highlights of the visual effects.** Stop and look around the world in ''VideoGame/Uncharted4AThiefsEnd''. Every bit of scenery, from the ground Nate is standing on to as far as the camera can see is all rendered in the in-game engine (''4'' is also the first and only ''Uncharted'' game to not use prerendered cutscenes; everything from start to finish is done in-engine). [[spoiler:Liberatlia]] in particular is utterly awe-inspiring, with its picturesque mountain vistas. The level of background detail is unreal but even tiny things like the way Nate's hair is rendered is just spectacular. Turn on Photo Mode to truly appreciate the level of work Naughty Dog put into the visual design of the game.* ''VideoGame/ShadowOfTheColossus'':** The vast, open backdrop, through which you can make your lonely way; the soft lighting effects, as if you were looking at this world through a permanent [[TheDulcineaEffect Dulcinea Effect]]; the fluid animations of Agro and Wander, and of the Colossi themselves. Pretty much the entirety of the visuals counts as this. It's so awesome that others [[FollowTheLeader have attempted to replicate some effects to various degrees]]. The Colossi in particular are simply breathtaking in their detail and sheer scale. Special note that all of the above was done ''before'' the era of HD Consoles!** The [=PS4=] remake ups the ante. Every asset was rebuilt from the ground up and everything from the fabric of Wander's clothes to every single blade of grass to the textures of each rock has been given a makeover that transcends even the best lookers of the [=PS4=]'s library. Doubly so if you have a Playstation 4 Pro, allowing you to experience this absurd amount of detail in 60 frames per second with absolutely no dips.* ''VideoGame/{{Okami}}''. One of the most beautiful art styles in gaming, ''ever''. It truly looks like a painting in motion, and easily holds a candle to more technologically impressive games like the above examples. ** The effects when you restore a cursed zone are just screaming SceneryPorn. *** While not as beautiful, the sequel still maintains the same effects on a tiny DS processor.* ''VideoGame/{{Ori and the Blind Forest}}'' has an almost ''spiritual'' beauty, practically throughout. Just watch the trailer. The graphics and animation are quite simply ''[[SincerityMode heavenly.]]'' ** Many Steam games have jaw-dropping graphics and many more can reduce hardened gamers [[TearJerker to sobs]], but very few can make players cry in just the [[DownerBeginning first 10 minutes]] based on the graphics ''alone''.* Find a video of ''VideoGame/{{BioShock|1}}'''s intro on [=YouTube=]. Watch it. Would you kindly pick up your jaw from the floor?** Naturally, the ''VideoGame/BioShock2'''s looks even better.** Even more so is the trailer of ''VideoGame/BioShockInfinite'', you'd be amazed on how much detail they put in on it.* ''Star Wars Roque Squadron 2: Rogue Leader'' boasts some incredible polygon counts and lighting effects in a game that was released in ''2001''. Its sequel, ''Rebel Strike'', has the highest polygon count of any game during the last generation (in the Battle of Hoth level.)* ''Recca Summer Carnival '92'', an ''NES'' game released only in Japan until the 3DS Virtual Console, features extremely fast-paced space shooter action as well as trippy, almost polygonal background effects.* ''VideoGame/CallOfDuty 4: VideoGame/ModernWarfare'' might have "cheated" by using RealIsBrown, but even now the graphics still look absolutely fantastic.** C'mon, why else did they set the intro level on a cargo ship in the middle of a raging storm?** If that didn't say something about the graphics, the invasion at the beginning of the Marine campaign certainly did.** On the [[NightmareFuel darker side of this trope]], we have [[spoiler: the nuclear explosion.]]** The Prypiat missions contain some of the most gorgeous usages of [[RealIsBrown gray filter]].** ''VideoGame/ModernWarfare2'' keeps up the amazing displays. The exterior of the Gulag and the Rio missions are wonderful displays of beauty, but [[spoiler: war-ravaged Washington D.C.]] is simply jaw-dropping, whether from amazement or sheer horror.** And ''VideoGame/ModernWarfare3'' keeps up the trend, with more war-torn cities like New York, Paris, London and Prague. The scene with [[spoiler:the Eiffel tower collapsing]] is absolutely jaw-dropping.* The original ''VideoGame/CallOfDuty'' is one of the best-looking games that use the id Tech 3 engine. Not only the visuals are quite realistic for their time, they also [[SceneryPorn look beautiful]]. its expansion pack, ''United Offensive'', is even better looking.** Perhaps the best example of this trope in the original is a level where you raid the German battleship ''[[CoolBoat Tirpitz]]''. In the sequel, the looks of the Sicily and Bastogne levels are simply fantastic.* The way Middle-Earth is presented in ''VideoGame/TheLordOfTheRingsOnline'' is a lot of the time breathtaking, especially Moria. From entering through the Hollin Gate and all the way to the East Gate, you can really see why Moria was considered the grandest of the Dwarvish halls. One could only imagine what it would look like before it's fall.** Honorable mention goes to Caras Galadhon (Lothlórien), especially by night, and the view when first entering Rivendell.** ''VideoGame/MiddleEarthShadowOfMordor'' not only has rain as a dynamic weather effect, but also ''hail''. Hail that bounces off characters, to boot.* ''VideoGame/{{Shadowverse}}'': Some of the visual effects in animated cards, like ripple effects, are simply gorgeous. Other cards have particularly stunning summon or attack animations. A special mention goes to the [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B9S4boxTRNo various]] [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTAM-1mogDU trailers]] [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f0Q1O42N8UE for]] [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ffk2Kq20zC0 the]] new expansions that not only have gotten better with each new one released, but are downright gorgeous to behold and especially when taking into consideration that all of it uses the original card art in the animations.* Creator/SquareEnix:** ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVII'': This game was probably the defining one for seeing games could have good graphics in the West. It's more than just the impressive [=FMVs=] and the seamless integration of them into the gameplay, it's also the style resembling a film more than a game. FFVII made use of panning cameras and styles unusual for games, and some of the [=FMVs=] are still impressive today for their camera work (the opening FMV panning up over Midgar, another one panning out as the train goes around the plate, the dramatic fall of the rain when you face down a dragon with Sephiroth in a flashback etc. etc.)** ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVIII'': The opening FMV raised the bar again. It still looks good now and it was created on the [=PS1=]. Even the in-game models are very impressive for the console, and some could be mistaken for early [=PS2=].** ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyXIII'': It's just the little things, really. Like how they got the hair to look so nice in game, despite the fact that it's probably just a bunch of flat planes sticking out of their heads with a partly transparent texture mapped on.*** On a related note, by now we have to admit that Square Enix has a "squeeze the console like a melon" policy that simply ''can't'' go unmentioned. There's ''a reason''[[note]] other than {{pride}}, [[WordOfGod as Square themselves confirmed in retrospect]][[/note]] they wanted [[UsefulNotes/PlayStation to use [=CDs=] instead of cartridges]] [[VideoGame/FinalFantasyVII as soon as possible]]. Since then, they managed to [[VideoGame/KingdomHeartsI pull off beautifully-looking Final Fantasy-ised portrayals of Disney characters as summons]], [[VideoGame/KingdomHeartsChainOfMemories stick Full-Motion-Videos into a Game Boy Advance]], [[VideoGame/KingdomHeartsII create a mind-blowing town in eternal sunset]], [[VideoGame/KingdomHearts358DaysOver2 faithfully recreating said town in handheld format]]... and so on. Really, after the latest title of mind-boggingly good graphics, after leaving fans wondering how they could possibly ever top themselves off, they show people exactly how it's done. [[VideoGame/DissidiaFinalFantasy Two]] [[VideoGame/KingdomHeartsBirthBySleep games]] even require data to be installed on the console in order to make load times faster - ''as the console's power gets squeezed that much.''*** Even in the 8-bit and 16-bit eras, they had this policy of graphics hardware abuse. Pop in ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyI'' for the NES or ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVI'' for the SNES sometime. The monster graphics were ''stunning'' for the time.** Square Enix are masters of FMV...particularly in the ''Franchise/FinalFantasy'' series. Some of their cut scenes are so beautiful that you can almost forget you're playing a video game. The ArtEvolution with each progressive game means that by the time VideoGame/FinalFantasyXIII came out, the gameplay was almost as beautiful as the cut scenes.** ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyXII'': The views are awesome, the creatures are interesting, but for really, really neat, you can't go past the Quickenings. You will probably see each one dozens if not hundreds of times, yet they never stop being breathtaking.** ''Videogame/SuperMarioRPG''. Probably the pinnacle of graphical achievement on the SNES, it puts ''VideoGame/DonkeyKongCountry'' to shame with its [[DigitizedSprites digitized]] environments, creating a very convincing pseudo-3D world with detailed environments and character designs. The first snow level in the first game looks stunning with the nearly (at the time) realistic snow covered trees in the background and the soft glow in the mountains for the sunrise. As you progress, the glow turns to gray and snow starts to fall, picking up in intensity until fog covers the background so that you can't see the mountains anymore when the blizzard comes in full force. Even to this day, not many games can (or don't even bother) pull off a seamless weather transition like that.** ''VideoGame/TrialsOfMana'' and ''VideoGame/ChronoTrigger'' were arguably the most graphically intense games on the SNES, in between the [[SceneryPorn incredibly detailed and colorful environments]], (relatively) lifelike animation (most notably with Flammie, the dragon mount in ''Trials of Mana''), and pseudo-3D spell effects.** ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyType0'': The original PSP version is gorgeous, and one of the best-looking titles produced for the console. The in-game graphics are highly detailed, massive and detailed enemies and environment are common, red tints are used to enhance the mood and atmosphere, and the art direction is great.** ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyX'' was the first test of what a ''Final Fantasy'' game could look like on the [=PS2=]'s graphics engine and it passed with flying colors. Any scene where Sin is displaying it's full power is a technological marvel and the Aeons are nothing short of gorgeous. The FMV scenes are also stunning.** With ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyXV'', it's gotten to the point where [[http://www.dualshockers.com/2015/02/05/final-fantasy-xv-screenshots-compare-the-sexy-cidney-in-real-time-vs-pre-rendered-and-more/ you can't even tell at first glance if a render is pre-rendered CG or rendered in real time.]] They've gotten visual effects down ''that good''.* ''VideoGame/TalesOfVesperia'', full stop. It's nothing short of stunning sometimes.** Also ''VideoGame/TalesOfXillia'' and its sequel. Xillia starts off in Fenmont, a city that has an eternal night and is beautifully lit up by glowing trees. ''Starts''. The animated cutscenes done by none other than Ufotable deserve a mention too.** ''VideoGame/TalesOfZestiria'': [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e5ood9bpxP4&t=5m21s The final, Beast-centric]] PunchParry looks absolutely amazing.* The inevitable ''VideoGame/HeavyRain''. ''Wow''. If that's what this generation can do, then the next generation is already here.** They actually topped themselves with ''VideoGame/BeyondTwoSouls''. You might be forgiven for mistaking the game for a UsefulNotes/PlayStation4 title rather than a UsefulNotes/PlayStation3 one.* ''[[VideoGame/{{FEAR}} Project Origin]]''. The Origin facility crater is nothing short of ''mind-boggling.'' SceneryGorn at its ''finest''.* Panau in ''[[VideoGame/JustCause Just Cause 2]]'' looks absolutely spectacular on its own, but try putting your destination on the opposite side of the map. A little marker saying "15 km" or something like that pops up... and you can ''see your destination''. That's right, this game renders stuff ''over 15 kilometers away'' (about 9.3 miles if you're American), still looks amazing, and it's all ''one seamless map''. Try to top ''that''.* Creator/{{Nintendo}}:** It's easy to take it for granted now, but ''VideoGame/SuperMario64'' was a stunning showcase title for the Nintendo 64. Expansive, colorful worlds, clever mixing of sprites with 3D environments and characters, fun animation, crisp anti aliased character models, cool particle effects (i.e. jumping into a painting) all running on an oil smooth framerate. Even though the low polygon presentation looks very dated now, the appealing cartoon art still allows it to stand tall in this day and age. The Nintendo DS port only took the presentation even further, and without compromising the cartoon charm of the original game!*** ''VideoGame/SuperMarioSunshine'' is still considered to have some of the best water effects in a video game, and it was released in ''2002''.*** ''VideoGame/SuperMarioGalaxy'' and its [[VideoGame/SuperMarioGalaxy2 sequel]] have some of the most utterly gorgeous levels in any game, a fantastic art style and color palette, and brilliantly creative areas (although many of the levels in the sequel were mostly copy pasted from the first game, even if they are pretty to look at).*** ''VideoGame/SuperMario3DWorld'' brings the Mario franchise to high definition, and it looks gorgeous as a result. The later stages of the game really show how beautiful the game can look, and it's definitely one of the best-looking games on the UsefulNotes/{{Wii U}} console. *** Not to mention it showed how well HD processes on the Wii U for games like this.*** And then we have the newly-announced Nintendo Switch game, ''VideoGame/SuperMarioOdyssey''. One look at the trailer and you'll see why people are impressed: the visuals are completely ''breathtaking''. In terms of graphics, this game looks to be to ''Galaxy'' what ''Galaxy'' was to ''Mario 64''. ** ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaOcarinaOfTime'' in 3D. Even if you don't play in 3D, it is absolutely jaw-dropping. The moment when you walk out of Link's house into Kokiri Forest is truly jaw-dropping and magical. The Water Temple is so beautiful, it's hard to hate it. The pan-over of the Temple of Time when you first enter it must be seen to be believed. And then you put it into 3D....*** Heck, the 3DS as a whole. Did anyone really think Nintendo would pull it off when it was announced? The augmented reality games are especially incredible.*** The original Nintendo 64 version of ''Ocarina of Time'' is no less impressive. There's a reason why the game runs at just 20 FPS on stock hardware - the polygon counts are quite large for a Nintendo 64 game, and areas like Hyrule Field were so hardware-intensive that Nintendo thought it could never get the game to run at all. There are also some subtle but impressive effects. For instance, the fishing rod has real-time physics applied to it, and the mirrors in the [[spoiler: Spirit Temple]] exhibit ''real-time shadowing'' (not the cheap cones of light that Link has as shadows).** The two Nintendo 64 ''Zeldas'' have their moments of this, but ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaTheWindWaker'' AND ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaTwilightPrincess'' are just works of art in comparison. The credits sequence of ''Twilight Princess'' edges into SceneryPorn.*** The graphics for ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaSkywardSword'' were inspired by Post-Impressionist artist [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul_C%C3%A9zanne Paul Cézanne]]. It really shows, especially if you look at something at a distance - it all looks like something from a water-colour painting. ''Skyward Sword'' took the best parts of the styles previous two games, blending into the best-looking game possible on the UsefulNotes/{{Wii}}'s outdated hardware with a hugely colorful, detailed world reminiscent of those paintings.*** ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaTheWindWaker'' had gorgeous anime-styled CelShaded art that really pushed the UsefulNotes/NintendoGameCube to its limits, with its dazzling water, fire, particle, and distortion effects, as well as its impressive rope bridge and cloth physics engine. One cutscene features a gigantic tower rising from the ocean, complete with drying patches of water. And it's all rendered in real-time. The scene is especially impressive at sunrise or sunset.*** ''Wind Waker HD'' has been announced for the Wii U. Imagine all that plus ten years of improvement and 1080p resolution.*** [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IkVt1s_ZFbw&t=01m02s Now with more real-time shadowing!]]*** ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaTwilightPrincess'' looked equally awesome, going with a more "[[RealIsBrown realistic]]" look with a huge emphasis on scale (Hyrule Castle is visible from most any point in the field).*** And now we have ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaBreathOfTheWild''. Hyrule is absolutely ''massive'' in scale, and at any point you can get a good enough view, you can see practically all of it '''''in spectacular detail''''' thanks to the absolutely insane draw distances. Of note is the very first scene when Link runs out of the Shrine of Resurrection and with a musical swell, the camera pans up and reveals Hyrule in all of its beauty.** In the VideoGame/MetroidPrime games, there are two that immediately come to mind:*** When a flash of bright light occurs, be it from an explosive blast or regular Scan Visor use in Corruption, you can see Samus's eyes. It's especially impressive in Corruption, since you can also see how far she's been corrupted in her eyes and the other facial features.*** In Prime 1 and 3, when you use the X-Ray visor, you can see the bones inside of her hands. Prime 1 also has her hand change positions for each beam she uses, which is a very nice easter egg.** Captain Falcon's [[MegatonPunch Falcon Punch]] was just straight awesome in ''VideoGame/SuperSmashBros'': after [[CallingYourAttacks shouting the name]], he unleashed a fiery punch complete with a 2D image of his emblem. Then along comes Melee and he keeps the punch, ''only now the flames morph into a falcon spreading its wings.''*** Many of the things in ''[[VideoGame/SuperSmashBros Super Smash Bros. Brawl]]''. Next time you play, go look at the trophies for the playable characters or the assist trophies and look at how detailed the skin, clothes, etc are-[[Franchise/SuperMarioBros Peach's]] dress has several layers to it that make it seem like something from the real world, [[VideoGame/EarthBound Ness']] backpack, hat and t-shirt have real visible seams in them, denim jeans and overalls has seams, buttons, etc. to look like real articles of clothing, the VideoGame/IceClimbers hoods have very well-rendered fur, Dedede, who normally just has a weird sash underneath his coat, was given a kimono, and Link's, well, everything. Character designs aside, many of the final smashes-particularly Triforce Slash, Great Aether, [[VideoGame/EarthBound PK Starstorm,]] and Lucario's Aura Laser-look REALLY great. Some people will only turn Smash Balls on to see those final smashes.*** Also, the cutscenes from "The Subspace Emissary," especially [[SugarWiki/MomentOfAwesome "The Great Invasion."]] The Subspace Gunship is pretty darn detailed.*** ''VideoGame/SuperSmashBros for 3DS and Wii U'' takes everything that "Brawl" did and IMPROVED upon it. Lucina has her birthmark on her eye, a detail that the creator himself admitted NO ONE WILL SEE, but had to include anyway. The crowning gem, however, HAS to be Orbital Gate Assault and The Great Cave Offensive. You can see individual threads on character clothing and the color palette is gorgeous. Special mention goes to the particle effects, which make all the animations appear MUCH smoother and the actions given MUCH more impact, as well as the colored trails from when you send a character flying, and the badass red lightning appears when you land a killing blow. It all makes the game look incredibly awesome. Specific examples include:*** Peach's realistically seamed glove (where before she might as well have had a white arm) complete with a tiny ring on one hand.*** [[http://www.neogaf.com/forum/showthread.php?t=799580 Greninja's Substitute doll]], which gained [[MemeticMutation memetic status]] when it was revealed how gorgeous it looked. Three words: Hyperrealistic Substitute Doll. And yes, it's all completely rendered.*** Link's chainmail under his tunic.*** ''All'' of the details on Shulk's clothes. Were he put in the game in a previous installment, his design might have been simplified.*** The off-the-screen KO effects. The characters actually look like they're pressed against the glass screen.*** Mega Man is clearly made out of metal plates and bolts. His design was actually given more detail than his own games! Plus, his animations actually use distortion and model trickery to match how he moved back in the days of the NES.*** Fox and Falco's visors are constantly updated with scrolling bits of information. You only EVER see this in motion during their victory animations.*** The big white scar on Ganondorf's chest is constantly glowing dynamically.*** As far as stages go, Kalos Pokemon League is an absolutely gorgeous stained-glass masterpiece, Gaur Plain looks WAY BETTER than the source game, which is quite a feat, and Magicant captures the heart of the original Magicant perfectly. Any Earthbound fan is bound to cry when the rift tears open and starts displaying scenes from Mother 1 and 2.*** The ''Pilotwings'' stage in the [=WiiU=] version is undiluted beauty. The characters battle atop a plane, starting at a landing strip and then taking off, flying around a beautifully rendered landscape while gorgeous music plays. And the Midgar stage, as showcased in the Cloud Strife DLC trailer, looks INCREDIBLE, and has some fans asking for a [=WiiU=] port of ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVII''! *** All this and in both versions, the game runs at a constant unbroken 60 FPS. Yes, even in 3D on the 3DS version.*** The Final Smashes. They already looked amazing in ''Brawl'', but here, they're even better. Many characters got theirs updated, such as Kirby, who now pulls out a Super Copy Ability (previously mentioned on this page!), which looked amazing in its source game, and now it's in HD. Ness and Lucas's Starstorm covers the entire screen in enormous, firey stars. Ryu's perfectly replicates the style of the combos in Street Fighter. But the most stellar example has to be Mega Man's, which features every incarnation of Mega Man appearing for a split-second and then teaming up with him to shoot an enormous laser. Despite only showing up for a few moments, each incarnation is as detailed as any of the fighters, even though you could blink and miss them!** When you really look at it, ''VideoGame/YoshisIsland'' really is a ''beautiful'' game. There's typically several layers of foreground and background, all of them hand drawn. Not to mention the fact that it really stretched the SNES's capabilities, often using Mode 7 in many different ways.*** The Super FX chip certainly helped. While ''Yoshi's Island'' did have some Super FX-powered polygon graphics (the pause and game over screens, a paper effect for when [[SquashedFlat the characters get flattened]], and the occasional spinning platform come to mind), the chip was used mostly for rotating and scaling sprites.** Turn on ''VideoGame/MarioKart8''. Pick a track. Any track, new or returning. The level of detail is nothing short of stunning. Nintendo really went to town for this one.* One of the main draws to the original ''[[VideoGame/SonicTheHedgehog1 Sonic The Hedgehog]]'' on the UsefulNotes/SegaGenesis was that the graphics looked ''incredible'', with the genius use of parallax scrolling and vibrant colors really showing off the console. Indeed, the ''[[VideoGame/SonicTheHedgehog Sonic]]'' franchise as a whole is generally known for having great graphics with a majority of their games, given that the series was made to look visually stunning from day one.** All four (or three, counting ''VideoGame/Sonic3AndKnuckles'' as one game) of the main Sonic games on the Sega Genesis had ''astoundingly'' well-drawn sprites that look great even into contemporary times. Some even had a pseudo-3D effect to them, like the trees in the GreenHillZone or the indentations in the checkered soil. It was even more impressive that the Sega Genesis was able to draw these complex sprites very quickly, showing off the console's power. ''Sonic 3 & Knuckles'' shows the peak of the graphical capabilities of the Genesis-extraordinary pixel art, amazing parallax scrolling on the backgrounds, and loads of tiny cosmetic details to the graphics that [[DoingItForTheArt aren't even necessary for building the game.]] There's also ''VideoGame/SonicCD'' for the UsefulNotes/SegaCD, with dreamlike environments that range from bright, colorful, and cheery to dark, grim, and spoiled.** Likewise, ''VideoGame/KnucklesChaotix'' showed what the Sega 32X was capable of. Easily one of the most gorgeous games of its time, its graphics still hold up really well, with beautiful, colorful graphics and eye-popping visual effects.** ''VideoGame/Sonic3DBlast'' pushed the graphical capabilities of the Sega Genesis to their limit. It even features a FullMotionVideo opening, unheard of for cartridge titles of the time. [[UpdatedRerelease The Saturn version]] of the game looks great as well, with nicely-done 3D models replacing the pre-rendered sprites of the original, and being further spiffed up with atmospheric lighting/fog effects.** ''VideoGame/SonicAdventure'' and ''VideoGame/SonicAdventure2'' demonstrated what the Dreamcast was capable of, and the first game blew away the competition of 1998 and 1999. The graphics may not have aged well, but they were mind-blowing back then. ''Adventure 2'', in particular, had some amazing lighting and shadow effects in its original incarnation.** While ''VideoGame/SonicTheHedgehog2006'' was [[ObviousBeta a glitchy mess]], the pre-rendered cutscenes are beautiful, especially the Soleanna fire festival at the beginning, in contrast with the rather stiff and awkward in-engine cutscenes.** ''VideoGame/SonicUnleashed'', ''especially'' the UsefulNotes/PlayStation3[=/=]UsefulNotes/{{Xbox 360}} versions. [[PlatformGame Day]] [[UnexpectedGameplayChange or]] [[BeatEmUp night]], the Hedgehog Engine has ''really'' done this game some justice, a huge improvement from the rather bland visuals of the [[VideoGame/ShadowTheHedgehog previous]] [[VideoGame/SonicTheHedgehog2006 titles]]. Even ''Eggmanland'' looks amazing.*** The [=Wii/PS2=] version's graphics aren't too shabby, either. The levels look pretty nice, but the Gaia Gates look ''beautiful''. ** ''Sonic Unleashed'' seemed to be a turning point in graphics when it came to Sonic games. Following ''Unleashed'' was ''VideoGame/SonicColors'', a ''Wii'' game which looks better than a lot of games look on the 360. Following ''Colors'' was ''VideoGame/SonicGenerations'', which used the same graphics engine as ''Unleashed'', and looks incredible as well (despite actually being ''scaled down'' in some areas). The re-imagining of the original GreenHillZone now includes huge backdrops full of amazing scenery; of particular note are the massive waterfalls and the underground river in Modern Sonic's level. The graphics become even more eye-popping on the PC version.** Sonic Generations takes all the previous games' art and turns them into wonderful HD graphics.** ''VideoGame/SonicLostWorld'' gives a nicely stylized and simplified spin on the the bright, colorful aesthetics of the earlier Genesis ''Sonic'' games, and translates the result into a HD setting.** ''VideoGame/SonicMania'' draws inspiration from the 16-bit classics, but takes advantage of modern tech to make the game look incredibly slick. [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SV7mUItaeEA The title screen]], alone, looks absolutely gorgeous in motion.* VideoGame/CommandAndConquer Red Alert 3 stays true to its 2.5D predecessor, and offers next to the comic style the famous long-time CG scenes of the series, realistic particle effects, very advanced shading and literally brilliant water.** It also features FMV cutscenes of the actual in-game units, all beautifully rendered -- it's one thing to see, say, submarines that can turn into aircraft or floating tanks or four-story mecha in gameplay, but it's quite another to see them [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OvJVjAIVwxU in live action]].* The ''Myst'' series has a few. You might consider pre-rendering to be "cheating", but some of the pre-rendered graphics are incredible.** Serenia in Myst IV, full stop. It's like some Tolkien-esque fantasy world, only you get to run around in it. Haven and Spire were good, but Serenia was breathtaking.** Riven in, well, Riven. A vast world that is far removed from the emptiness of Myst.** ''All'' of the coming-in-for-a-landing clips that play when you use a linking book should rate a mention, as do the various roller-coaster animations that mark the completion of Ages in ''Exile'' or ''Revelation''. Whoa...* ''VideoGame/AlanWake'' looks fairly good on its own, and then you get the flares and [[FlareGun flare guns]]. Dramatic, awesomely flickering red light? Check. Amazing-looking smoke? Check. BulletTime if you pull one out while surrounded by mooks? Check. And, above all, safety (because LightIsGood and DarkIsEvil are literal)? Check.* One of the most amazingly impressive effects ever achieved on the Game Boy Advance was the Catastrophe summon from [[VideoGame/GoldenSun Golden Sun: The Lost Age]]. [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DatHLd1uO2g Watch it here.]]** Everything in both VideoGame/GoldenSun games was awesome. The psuedo 3D for battle scenes pushed the GBA. Nearly all of the higher level summons were multi-sprited.** And now we have VideoGame/GoldenSunDarkDawn, which manages to exceed the originals in graphical quality. Say what you will about the [[ItsEasySoItSucks game]][[ItsTheSameNowItSucks play]], this game really pushes the DS.* You can use an Action Replay MAX to ramp up the frame rate and visual quality in XGRA and it looks brilliant.* Creator/{{Treasure}} has a lot of renown for making visually stunning games, one of the best examples being their debut Genesis game, ''VideoGame/GunstarHeroes''. The game featured scrolling and rotating effects that could give games on the SNES a run for their money, coupled with explosions going off with great volume and regularity, all without a single drop in framerate.* ''[[VideoGame/GodOfWar GOD OF WAR]]''.* Creator/{{Bethesda}}[='s=] flagship series games are renowned for their absolutely gorgeous landscapes and massive worlds to explore, at least [[TechnologyMarchesOn by the standards of when they were released]]. To note:** ''Franchise/TheElderScrolls'' series, starting with the series' [[VideoGame3DLeap 3D Leap]] with ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIIIMorrowind Morrowind]]'', is well known for its [[SceneryPorn beautiful landscapes and skies]]. It is helped that in ''Morrowind'' and ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion Oblivion]]'', you step out into the game world (from the inside of a boat and from the ForcedTutorial dungeon respectively) only to have your breath taken away by the views (the GreenHillZone around [[FirstTown Seyda Neen]] and the Ayleid ruins of Vilverin, respectively). ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim Skyrim]]'' takes it to another level with the beauty of its world, which is introduced to the player during a cart ride in the opening sequence. Additionally, the series takes great pains to make each area of the game world have its own unique feel. ''Morrowind'' ranges from the swampy Bitter Coast to the grassy Grazelands to the broken-up islands of Azura's Coast to the flat-out {{Mordor}}-esque Red Mountain. ''Oblivion'' has the peaceful southern coasts turning into temperate forests as you go north, ending in the snow-covered mountains on the border of Skyrim. ''Skyrim'' likewise ranges from boreal forests in the south to central taigas with sparse trees to frozen-over polar-like regions in the north.** ''VideoGame/{{Fallout}}'', since Bethesda acquired the property with ''VideoGame/{{Fallout 3}}'', has also take this approach. ''Fallout 3'' starts out when you exit your vault and [[ItMakesSenseInContext see natural light for the first time in your life]]. After the screen stops glowing you get to see ''[[http://oyster.ignimgs.com/ve3d/images/03/57/35708_normal.jpg this]]''. Words fail to describe the awesome, but it's also [[AfterTheEnd rather depressing]]... * The animated sequences in the ''VideoGame/ProfessorLayton'' games. Fluid, beautiful animation on the Nintendo DS, a system not known for its graphics capabilities, and they only get better in the newer games. The game itself has some beautifully done background areas.** The destruction of [[spoiler:Anton's Mansion]] from VideoGame/ProfessorLaytonAndTheDiabolicalBox, the [[spoiler:[[CrazyAwesome Mobile Fortress]]]] from VideoGame/ProfessorLaytonAndTheUnwoundFuture, and the titular [[VideoGame/ProfessorLaytonAndTheLastSpecter Last Spectre]].* ''VideoGame/OdinSphere''. The entire game.** And you can't mention VideoGame/OdinSphere without mentioning it's SpiritualSuccessor, ''VideoGame/MuramasaTheDemonBlade''.** Or ''VideoGame/DragonsCrown'' for that matter. Vanillaware is well-known for turning out games with absolutely amazing 2D art that look just as good years later.* ''VideoGame/{{Homeworld}}''. Never before have such limited techniques and technology been put to such utterly beautiful use. Despite being ''11'' years old.* Blizzard's games, such as ''VideoGame/WorldOfWarcraft'' and ''VideoGame/{{Starcraft|I}}'' are not known for this...but the cinematics very, very much are. [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wq4Y7ztznKc See the Cataclysm trailer]].** ''VideoGame/{{StarCraft II}}'' actually ''has'' outstandingly cinematic graphics, and most of its cutscenes are rendered is the same engine.* It may not be the shiniest game, but Sins of a Solar Empire is impressive in that you can zoom in to see a single fighter craft in battle, or zoom out to see several star systems, and every single level in between that. All of them quite detailed and able to manipulate the camera in a 360-degree sphere.* Indie developer Studio MDHR took ''great'' lengths to making their first game, ''{{VideoGame/Cuphead}}'', [[DoingItForTheArt look authentic to the animated shorts of the 1930s it is inspired from]]-the backgrounds are ''painted'', '''''every''''' character and visual effect is hand-drawn animation (the only digital effect used is the colorization), the game even uses a grainy filter to evoke the film quality of the time period. The result is a game [[https://analogaddiction.files.wordpress.com/2014/06/cuphead-screenshot-bat-jpg.jpg that can]] [[http://static.trueachievements.com/customimages/030192.jpg and would]] [[http://www.cupheadgame.com/images/pic01.jpg fool anyone]] into thinking they were watching a honest-to-god [[Creator/FleischerStudios Fleischer Studios short]], and not a videogame made in the 2010s. All of this at 60 frames per second, done in a such a way that both the visual style and the framerate coexist naturally.* ''VideoGame/{{Injustice 2}}'' is a good looking game all around, but one area in which the game looks particularly amazing is in each character's facial animations, which are some of the most realistically rendered in any game of its generation.* ''VideoGame/CityOfHeroes''' Ultra Mode was added to allow players with higher-end graphics cards to take advantage of their processing power. When it's turned on, detail goes through the roof, including real-time shadows and reflections in glass and water. The new areas in [[MirrorUniverse Praetoria]] were designed to take advantage of Ultra Mode, and they look ''amazing''.* ''VideoGame/SuperRobotWars'' seems to outdo itself with each major release, both in recreating the feel of existing characters as well as doing their own thing with their OriginalGeneration. Sure, it's made entirely out of anime visual cliches, some of which were originally "shortcuts" to begin with, but it's pulled off so well that by the time of ''VideoGame/SuperRobotWarsZ'' you could be forgiven for forgetting that this is basically [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E-4u2dR8TTg#t=2m35s a sprite-based game with Super Deformed characters]]. Heck, even the DS games are [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-mzIXgpyE_c absolutely amazing]].* Say what you want about ''VideoGame/FableIII'', you can't deny that the graphics are beautiful.* Butter Building's numerous rotating towers in ''VideoGame/KirbysAdventure'', an ''NES game''.** And ''VideoGame/KirbysEpicYarn''. People argue it looks better than ''God of War 3''! Other games, like ''[[VideoGame/KirbySuperStar Super Star Ultra]]'', have beautiful looking sprites, and games like ''[[VideoGame/KirbyCanvasCurse Canvas Curse]]'' have cool looking backgrounds. Kirby games are always beautiful, graphically.** Kirby games are usually the last Nintendo-published games of their respective systems, and thus tax those systems to show what they're really capable of. Case in point: the beautiful painterly backgrounds of ''VideoGame/KirbysDreamLand3''. ** ''VideoGame/KirbySqueakSquad''. The final world. The space-y background looks like a gosh-darn '''''painting.'''''** The Super Copy Abilities and the backgrounds in Kirby's Return to Dream Land.*** And the level in [[spoiler:Dangerous Dinner]] where Kirby is dodging '''miniature stars'''.* VideoGame/{{Battletoads}} used a lot of cool tricks in several levels that you wouldn't believe would be possible on the NES.* Any ''VideoGame/MetalSlug'' game. The sprites are all extremely fluid and detailed, and the backgrounds have a metric ton of touches put into them. How fluid are the animations? [[http://www.spriters-resource.com/arcade/ms/sheet/11225 This is the spritesheet for Marco.]]* The ''Franchise/{{Halo}}'' series has some of the most beautiful skyboxes you will ever see (and not just in the campaign - the multiplayer maps, like ''VideoGame/Reach''[='s=] "Anchor 9", can look wonderful). The art style of the four different factions you encounter is also wonderfully contrasting - and each is beautiful/cool in its own way. Take the Forerunner designs, particularly the Sentinels.** While the cutscenes for ''Videogame/HaloWars'' and ''everything'' in ''Videogame/Halo4'' (which was made at the end of the 360's life cycle) definitely qualify, ''The Master Chief Collection'' kicked this trope UpToEleven in two regards; the slight update that the already impressive ''Halo 4'' received, and the ''Halo 2: Anniversary'' content. The remastered gameplay looks gorgeous as it is, but the cutscenes that were animated by blur Studios, who have since been brought on full time, are indistinguishable from reality, and retain the more-popular artstyle from the original game, rather than the mixture used in ''CE Anniversary''. The Gravemind is a notable example;in the original game, due to time constraints, he looks rather...silly, often described as an Audrey-ripoff. In ''Anniversary'', he's far visibly more gigantic and horrifically grotesque; befitting a being composed of thousands upon thousands of combined corpses. THey also brought new sound design that made the scenes feel grounded in reality.* ''VideoGame/HalfLife2''. The Source Engine has aged brilliantly (and ''VideoGame/{{Portal 2}}'' is proof of this). The facial animation is great, and the water effects are flat-out amazing. Oh, and so are the fire effects, while we're at it.** Speaking of Source facial animations, Valve has taken to giving non-human characters facial animations as well despite having no visible face, and it's ''stunning''. Just look at Atlas and P-body but especially Wheatley from ''VideoGame/{{Portal 2}}''.** Portal 2 also features an absolutely stunning opening sequence where a room is destroyed and falls apart around the player character.** Some more specific examples... despite coming out in 2004, Half-Life 2 still has quite impressive graphics, and the later games (in particular, Episode 2, which was the first to use the updated version of the Source Engine used in Portal) only go even farther. Some moments that stick out in particular from the Half-Life series are the bridge from Half-Life 2 (it's... just stunning), the moment when you step out of the underground in Episode One and see the ruined city and the Citadel rising above everything, and the moment when Alyx and Gordon overlook City 17 in Episode Two after the train crash--the energy seething around the Citadel over City 17 is as gorgeous as it is dangerous.** ''Meet the Medic'' from VideoGame/TeamFortress2 also counts. Yeah, it's cartoonish, but who says it has to be realistic to be awesome?*** Why not the whole of VideoGame/TeamFortress2? Valve set out to create a game with the visual flair of midcentury illustrations, and boy did they get it right. The stylization works in the game's favor and makes sure it's not going to age poorly.** Actually it seems a lot of Valve games seem to fall under this, due their source engine having a distinct visual flair.* [[VideoGame/BlackMesa Black Mesa]] deserves its own entry by virtue of being just... incredible in its visuals. One of Crowbar Collective's goals for the remake was to give ''[[VideoGame/HalfLife Half-Life]]'' the graphic quality that the game deserved after the dissapointment of Valve's own port to the Source engine, and it shows.** Many of the game's areas have been scaled up in size and impressiveness. The original test chamber, the rocket engine test chamber, the rocket launching facilities, the Black Mesa Electric Dam, the Osprey landing zone, the explosives room and many others are now enormous, spacious and full of details like posters, lights, and others.** The infrastructure has also been upgraded; the test chamber's material analyzer now fills the whole area with amazing lights and shadows when active. ''Power Up'' features our first Gargantua being killed by a massive electrical discharge, and ''On A Rail'' features a believable and extensive underground cargo rail system, with military traps and a rocket launch facility included.** What little we've seen of Xen is straight up ''marvelous''. The dull platforming map at the beginning is now a whole area that reeks of alien wildlife, lush skies and danger. Colors complement each other really well, and the whole place is an intelligent maze. Of special note is the addition of [[spoiler: a Black Mesa's research camp and FOB near the teleport platform, backing up what we've learned in ''Questionable Ethics'' and ''Lambda Core''; hell, the whole place shows signs of human alteration and research]].* ''VideoGame/RaymanOrigins'' was hands-down one of the best looking games of the decade, all thanks to the [=UbiArt=] Framework engine that allowed artists and designers to produce the game's art without having to worry about it technical issues. [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OgpCGqYf2lQ It really, really, shows]]. The sequel ''VideoGame/RaymanLegends'' took it [[UpToEleven even further]] by using dynamic lighting and 3D models in addition to altering the artstyle to [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=erHbuInWnuw&noredirect=1 something out of an oil-painting]].* ''VideoGame/ChildOfLight'' is not only powered by the same engine that brought us the visuals of ''VideoGame/RaymanOrigins'' and ''VideoGame/RaymanLegends'', but also has an art style that lends to a presentation not unlike a moving picture book, leading to some [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EuDaxVfe12o absolutely breathtaking visuals]]. * VideoGame/LANoire looks phenomenal, using advanced motion capturing techniques to create the most realistic faces video games have ever seen. [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aL9wsEFohTw Truly has to be seen to be believed.]]** Barring that, the fact that late 1940's LA is recreated with a great of accuracy is nothing short of impressive. Not to mention other details like store signs, window displays, cars and period accurate clothing. It's really hard to deny that this is a very, very pretty game.** Another Rockstar effort, ''VideoGame/RedDeadRedemption'', also stands out as visually stunning. The western desert setting generally justifies the RealIsBrown approach... and when the game isn't brown and gritty, like in the snowy, mountainous forest area of Tall Trees, it's colorful, bright, and beautiful. The deserts manage to be gorgeous, too, especially when the player is riding into the sunset, and the city of Blackwater is absolutely lovely to look at. Go onto the ferry dock and watch the sun rise over Blackwater some time in the game. It's absolutely stunning.* The ''VideoGame/DonkeyKongCountry'' trilogy.** The [[VideoGame/DonkeyKongCountry1 original game]] was one of the first console games (it had already been done in arcades) to feature pre-rendered graphics: something that even Nintendo thought was impossible on the Super NES. In-game graphics have ultimately improved over the years, but when it first came out it was something most people hadn't seen before in a console game. Whats more impressive is that this was all done without ''any'' enhancement chips or add-ons; everything you see is done by the actual SNES.** It's easy to miss in ''VideoGame/DonkeyKongCountry2DiddysKongQuest'' because you're busy dealing with the level's hazards, but the background in Lockjaw's Locker is actually a fully 3D ship deck that changes your angle of view depending on your vertical position in the level. This was pulled off on the Super Nintendo, but it wouldn't look out of place in a PlayStation 1 game.** [[VideoGame/DonkeyKongCountryReturns Fast-forward by fifteen-or-so years.]] How do you replicate that "oh-this-game-has-the-best-graphics-ever"-esque feeling, considering that by now there's a well-established rivalry in this medium? How about taking an already beautifully-looking third game in [[VideoGame/MetroidPrime3Corruption a trilogy]] and using ''[[UpToEleven three times as many polygons?]]''** The [=WiiU=] sequel ''[[VideoGame/DonkeyKongCountryTropicalFreeze Tropical Freeze]]'' is no slouch in the graphics department either-like the aforementioned ''Mario 3D World'' example, ''Tropical Freeze'' shows a great job at showcasing the ''DKC'' franchise in high definition. One particular graphical enhancement touted in the game's reveal and by the developer was the Kong family's fur, [[http://1u88jj3r4db2x4txp44yqfj1.wpengine.netdna-cdn.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/tropicalfreeze.jpg which now looks so detailed, it looks downright lifelike.]]* If you really want Visual Effects of Awesome, look no further than Stargate (the sequel to ''VideoGame/{{Defender}}''; no relation to the movie), specifically when you use the level warp trick (by flying through a stargate with a certain number of rescued Earthlings). It's truly a sight to behold (and this was 1981; one year after the original came out).* Midway released an arcade game called "Kozmik Krooz'r" in the early 1980's. It featured a realistic looking, rotating "flying saucer" that actually wasn't part of the game itself. It was just a prop that was reflected in a mirror. Nonetheless it was considered groudbreaking for the time.* Laserdisc games are considered to be a subversion, since they're more like interactive movies than true games (e.g., ''VideoGame/DragonsLair'', etc). On the other hand, other games tried to invoke this trope by giving more interactivity (e.g., CobraCommand). However, this usually meant creating actual game graphics to overlay onto the video.** ''VideoGame/BrainDead13'' actually defies the whole laserdisc genre with the end of this game, combined with SceneryPorn: The confrontation scene [[spoiler:with Neurosis]] has only small lights lined up in a row that light up the total blackness in the room, and it's all in ConspicuousCG (except for the characters, of course). Add a bit of the GratuitousDiscoSequence with MoreDakka [[spoiler:from Fritz]] that lights up the scenery, and the whole thing is just awesome indeed. Whoever thought up a final confrontation to be a whole disco that takes place ''entirely in the dark'' should be very proud of themselves, like something that only Creator/QuentinTarantino would think up.*** Also, most of the resurrection scenes, such as floor panel lights that make Lance reappear if he dies during the dark disco sequence; the lightning bolts that bring him back if he dies during Moose's sequence; and the "flames of rebirth" that reform Lance's body if he dies in haunted rooms. These are just awesome indeed.* ''VideoGame/AssassinsCreedBrotherhood''. The [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yaSos9508bk in-game graphics]] were rather nice but [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zzNs4-kRLaE the story trailer]] really takes the cake.* ''VideoGame/FZero X'' and ''F-Zero GX'': Being made for the Nintendo 64, ''X'' isn't very detailed, but it never drops the framerate. ''GX'' looks wonderful, and also never drops the framerate. Why is that awesome? Because not only do the games move at a really damn fast pace, there are 'thirty' vehicles going at once, and they can all be on screen at once, without any slowdown whatsoever!* ''VideoGame/{{Conduit 2}}''. The first level takes place on an oil rig in the middle of the ocean. If you look down, you can see waves. Not still water with vague ripples on them, ''actual waves''. Most [=PS3=] and 360 games don't even have that, and the developers pulled it off on a Wii.* ''VideoGame/TheWitcher2AssassinsOfKings''. [[PunctuatedForEmphasis THE]].[[SceneryPorn WHOLE]]. [[SceneryGorn DAMN]]. [[JustForFun/MadeOfWin THING]]. If you don't agree, then you haven't [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f-RTpRsD4zI seen it]], or just plain out lying.** And given even ''more'' attention to detail in ''VideoGame/TheWitcher3WildHunt'' - even [[WebAnimation/ZeroPunctuation Yahtzee]] heaped praise on it for getting on the near-side of the UncannyValley, with a special shoutout to the "eyebrow wrangler". The "Blood and Wine" expansion cranked it up even further, as Toussaint is an [[SceneryPorn idyllic area]] compared to the frozen beauty of Skellige and the SceneryGorn of Velen.* So maybe the ''VideoGame/DeadOrAlive'' Xtreme subseries is just a [[ExcusePlot blatant excuse]] to show [[ActionGirl the girls of DOA]] in [[{{Stripperiffic}} the skimpiest bikinis known to man]], but all [[ADateWithRosiePalms "playing with one hand"]] jokes aside, it features some pretty amazing visual effects... Yes, other than [[{{Gainaxing}} the physics-defying breasts]]. Just consider that whatever girl you chose is rendered in real time in whatever ridiculous outfit you chose, plus the [[JigglePhysics jiggling]] of her hair, clothes and... [[MaleGaze Other aspects]].* ''[[VideoGame/FireEmblemTellius Fire Emblem: Path Of Radiance]]'' brought us the cel-shaded cutscenes. They have this cool anime-style appearance that at times almost look hand-drawn.** [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2g02vd83yqU The series continues awesome-looking-cutscene trend]] with ''VideoGame/FireEmblemAwakening''. The visuals look like the game is for the Vita.** ''VideoGame/FireEmblemFates'' continues the trend of using stunning cel-shaded cutscenes and adds an awesome effect of its own: the environments you see on the map translate directly into the combat scenes, [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UAE8MsPFeNQ zooming in on the environment when fighting starts, then zooming back out to a bird's-eye view afterwards]].* ''VideoGame/BatenKaitos'':** Good lord. The stunning pink and purple clouds of Diadem, the vibrant trees and lush jungles of Anuenue, the hallucinatory beauty of Mira and the Trail of Souls...everything in that game is gorgeous.** Then ''[[EvenBetterSequel Origins]]'' came out two years later and topped it. The scenery mostly looks the same, but the character models are infinitely better, ''especially'' the battle animations. Pull off something like The Apotheosis or Crimson Skytooth and tell me it doesn't look amazing.** How about the spiritual predecessor, ''VideoGame/ChronoCross''? Sure, the [=PS1=] graphics haven't aged that well, but it still looked fantastic back in the day.* ''VideoGame/MarvelVsCapcom3''. Just '''[[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8awHhI1ZRKU look]]''' at [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zlPVxh-zPd8 these]] videos and try to deny that your jaw didn't drop to the floor!* ''VideoGame/DJMAXTechnika''. An arcade game running at 720p, it has some of the most stunning [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zMmlDbN_v2U&hd=1 music]] [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K-vAQx-yc5M&hd=1 videos]] to grace the RhythmGame genre. All while the gameplay runs at 60 frames per second, no less.* When ''VideoGame/StreetFighterIII'' first came out, many reviews insulted the sprite graphics; 3D models were becoming the norm. Indeed, a still shot of the game looks pretty mediocre by today's standards with the limited technology making it very pixelated. However, a still image misses the most important thing about Street Fighter III's graphics: The movement. Most sprite-based fighting games have very choppy movement because easy individual frame requires a ton of work, so only the ending post and start-up are given frames. Street Fighter III has ''tons'' of sprites for each character, more than any other fighting game at the time. This made all the movements and actions of the game, including ones as simple as ''breathing'', incredibly smooth and complete looking, to the point that some retroactively consider its spritework the best in any fighting game. The sheer effort put into making all those sprites deserves a round of applause alone.* The scene from ''VideoGame/PokemonBlackAndWhite'' when [[spoiler: N's castle rises out of the ground]].** How about the Skyarrow Bridge? At first, the game's just been typical Pokemon fare and settings - small towns, forests, rivers, etc. Then, you go across this ''huge'' bridge, with trucks and boats and other things going underneath it, and the camera swooping around to show it all off, and finally you see Castelia City looming on the far side.** It seems to have become a new tradition in the Pokemon series, from Black and White onwards, to give each Legendary mascot of the game a breathtaking 3D intro. Special mention goes to when you summon Reshiram/Zekrom for the first time and are given an awesome display of their power on the environment, and in HG/SS when Lugia or Ho-Oh swoops out of the sky to face you. Even more incredible at night.** While the graphics and animations of the 3D core games are [[BrokenBase huge points of contention]] among fans, the legendary Pokemon's introductions are still beautiful to look at; special mention goes to [[spoiler:Nebby's evolution into Solgaleo/Lunala]] in ''VideoGame/PokemonSunAndMoon'', which will leave your jaw hanging open in more ways than one.* The Man-At-Legs in Pikmin 2. Similar to the Subspace Gunship example from above, in the Piklopedia the game will LAG if you get it moving. And the Piklopedia won't even show the thing firing its gun, which must be seen. It's incredible and yet grotesque at the same time.* Pick a Creator/CyberConnect2 game from the UsefulNotes/PlayStation2 era onwards: Any of them will qualify, especially after [=CyberConnect2=] formed the studio Sensible Art Innovation, which they used not only for movie making, but utilizing it as part of their current console generation cutscene maker. With the power of the unreal Engine, ''VideoGame/AsurasWrath'' by [=CyberConnect2=] takes the engine to it's limits to get really awesome visuals. [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bRF9kXwkaHQ Here's an example]].* ''VideoGame/{{Xenoblade}}'' pulls off huge environments with plenty of wildlife with dizzying attention to detail, with fantastic draw distance near unprecedented for all but the largest sandbox games. Many reviewers actually ''complained'' that the game was on the Wii and not a High-definition system.** Then you get stuff like the colored mist in the swamp at night, the golden light from the crystals on the snowy peaks, and whenever there is a thunderstorm in a area.** ''VideoGame/XenobladeChroniclesX'' fixes it's predecessor's "Not in HD" problem, bringing an even bigger game world to boot.* ''VideoGame/{{Undertale}}'' somehow manages to make relatively simple sprite artwork look absolutely incredible at times. Special mention goes to the black-and-turquoise areas in Waterfall, the fact that only a ''handful'' of enemies' battle sprites are actually one sprite and not multiple sprites stitched together (while we're at it, the battle sprites themselves are surprisingly detailed considering the aforementioned low-res graphics and [[DeliberatelyMonochrome only using black and white]]), and the final battle against [[spoiler:the newly-resurrected Asriel.]]* No love for the [[VideoGame/{{X}} X-Universe]] series? As an example: This game is a spaceflight game that models everything from miniscule scout ships to monstrous destroyers and stations, each of which is meticulously modeled to the last panel. And you can look at all of it. From any angle. While floating about equally beautiful planets, ranging from earth-like Argon Prime, to the ocean world of Nishala, the Boron home planet.* The graphics may not be the best (though this was done on purpose), but stand on top of a mountain in ''VideoGame/{{Minecraft}}'', look out at the landscape, and tell me it isn't absolutely gorgeous.* ''VideoGame/ValkyriaChronicles'' looks and feels likes a UsefulNotes/WorldWarII-inspired anime saga with very beautiful sketchbook-style flare...until you realize that ''everything'' you see is entirely rendered in-game and that you're actually ''playing'' it.* The ''VideoGame/DawnOfWar'' games are some of the best looking PC Strategy games around, especially the sequel and its expansions. Down to the amazing detail on the unit models themselves, crafted to closely resemble their tabletop model counterparts to an exquisite degree and the incredibly good looking particle effects and SceneryGorn. And let's not forget those beautiful cutscenes like the [[ApocalypseWow Exterminatus of Typhon Primaris]] and the Opening cutscene to both the original and the sequel. * ''VideoGame/{{Wipeout}}'' is not only racing, but also this trope pushed UpToEleven. Even in the first two games, there were some EPIC visual effects for that era: in the first Wipeout, the visual effects of every weapon were incredible, and it was a 1994 GAME. ''2097'', with the racetracks Gare D'Europa and Spilskinanke which have sudden and blinding flashes which can distract you, and the Quake weapon which makes the road up ahead shaking like crazy, this is an high quality Fifth Gen videogame visual effect porn.** ''HD'' and ''2048'' push this trope even further than 2097 did with the Zone mode, in which the track and scenery become very simple with one shade of a certain or multiple colors, and the billboards and the road become also music equalizers! How cool is that?!?*** Also, ALL OF THE INTRO CLIPS OF EVERY GAME fall into this trope. Just watch for example the intro for ''Pulse''. HOLY MOTHER OF GOD.* If we weren't so busy being scared out of our wits, we'd appreciate the foggy beauty of the ''Franchise/SilentHill'' series. The first three games pushed the graphical limits of whatever console they were. Special mention goes to ''VideoGame/SilentHill3'', where the animations where on par with current gen consoles.** ''P.T.''/''VideoGame/SilentHills'' was one of the most jaw-dropping things to come out of video games lately in terms of visuals. Some fans have watched gameplay footage and thought it was a live action movie! And this was for the TEASER, and it is a shame we may never know what the full game would look like. * In the Franchise/ResidentEvil series, the VideoGame/ResidentEvil remake has amazing graphics. VideoGame/ResidentEvil4 still looks good today too, despite it's age.** The REmake still holds it's own, even in the current gen.** Shout out to ''VideoGame/ResidentEvilRevelations'' for looking so, so good on a [=3DS=]. *** ''Revelations'' famously pushed the 3DS to its limits, with detailed modeling, high-resolution texture work, superb and dynamic lighting effects, multiple CG cutscenes, tons of high-quality voice acting, and a stable framerate (bar a few hiccups during in-game loading segments). The way Capcom achieved this level of quality was via the MT Framework Mobile engine, a simplified version of the MT Framework engine used on Capcom's console titles. The similarities between the two engines allowed the developers of ''Revelations'' to deliver self-proclaimed "console quality" visuals on a smaller system. It really shows.* ''VideoGame/{{Syberia}}'' has some beautiful visual effects, especially when it comes to water. That it is a brainchild of an artist more than of a writer or game designer probably explains the loving attention given to its visuals.* The Franchise/MetalGear series. If there's anything Konami does best, creating impressive graphics may certainly be it. Thanks to Kojima's meticulous eye for detail, these games still look good despite their age. The HD remastering of [[VideoGame/MetalGearSolid2 MGS2]], [[VideoGame/MetalGearSolid3 MGS3]], and [[VideoGame/MetalGearSolidPeaceWalker Peace Walker]], give new appreciation for the visuals in these games. [=MGS3=] really pushed the limits of the [=PS2=], and its HD remastered version can give some games from this generation a run for their money. ** Although [=PS1=] games haven't aged well at all, the first game is considered to be [[http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-yOput4lAToY/UNBv9rhpF-I/AAAAAAAAAHQ/TBdOXS1vGu8/s1600/MGS+Snake+behind+tank+in+Armory.jpeg one of the best looking games]] [[http://xboxoz360.files.wordpress.com/2011/02/oxcgn-metal-gear-3.jpg from the period]], due to realistic lighting and high level of detail. ** ''VideoGame/MetalGearSolid4'', despite using RealIsBrown, manages to look very pretty, pretty enough to make the game of the best looking out there currently.** Then there's ''VideoGame/MetalGearSolidVThePhantomPain'', and shames the developers who say that there's little to no more room for graphical improvement after this gen. [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=acq2RRTQrs0 Take a look for yourself]]. *** Konami posted a [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=60FqLOMOPgU generational comparison of the game]]. Some lighting effects aside, you would be hard pressed to figure out which version is which.** New fans of the series who were introduced to Snake Eater via the HD Collection have played it thinking it was a [=PS3=] game.* ''[[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JX_P0Q4ploQ Xexex]]'' had gorgeous rendered graphics and pulled off other amazing graphical feats such as warping and zooming back in 1991. The graphics were so ahead of their time, it was impossible to port this game to the UsefulNotes/SegaGenesis or the UsefulNotes/SuperNintendoEntertainmentSystem without a severe downgrade.* ''VideoGame/BatmanArkhamAsylum'' has an amazing, gritty, realistic style (if you aren't using Detective Mode).** ''VideoGame/BatmanArkhamKnight'': Despite being a ContestedSequel and the PC PortingDisaster, the opinions on the graphics has a broad consensus.*** Once the game came out, everyone was impressed that the [=PS4=] graphics shown in previews weren't dolled-up for E3 but actual in-game renders. The early trailers amazed people to the point that they believed the actual gameplay was '''still only cutscenes'''. ''Knight'' doesn't even ''have'' any pre-rendered cutscenes - ''everything'' uses the in-game engine. Rain in particular looks great, but the real kicker is seeing it land on Batman - the moving textures and the effect of the rain dripping and sliding off him looks fantastic. Some glitches show rain landing inside of buildings, but still has the same wetting effect, showing that the rain itself has physics. *** Likewise the animation and CastOfSnowflakes character design with special credit going to the [[spoiler:seamless way Joker's hallucination AI follows Batman around and appears in any areas, with myriad details of idle animation and voicework to comment on situations and events.]] The pathfinding of the Batmobile has also been praised. *** Of course the most impressive feat is the fact that the game's large map, thrice the size of ''Arkham City'' can be traversed with ''no loading times'', the fact that thugs and mooks can hide inside buildings (with the [[BiggerOnTheInside interiors of buildings no longer being larger than the exteriors]]) to escape a street brawl. Many were suspicious of the boast made by Rocksteady since a similar one made for Ubisoft's ''VideoGame/AssassinsCreedUnity'' was proven false, but the game really does pull it off brilliantly.* Everything from ''VideoGame/AliceMadnessReturns''. The facial expressions, Alice's dresses, the fighting motions...hysteria mode.* ''VideoGame/{{Bayonetta}}'' has some of the most stunning and beautiful environments and locations ever seen in a video game, ''especially'' on the Xbox 360 version. * ''[[VideoGame/SegaSuperstars Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed]]'' did an excellent job at recreating locations from classic Sega games in beautiful HD. You know the developers did a great job when one of the original developers of ''VideoGame/SkiesOfArcadia'' cried tears of joy when seeing how well-made the ''Skies of Arcadia'' racetrack is.* The characters in ''VideoGame/{{Skullgirls}}'' are all made with HAND DRAWN ANIMATION. This is especially incredible with Double and Robo-Fortune, who constantly have things moving on them. * Creator/StudioGhibli had a hand in ''VideoGame/NiNoKuni'', and it shows. You could be fooled into thinking you're watching some kind of Ghibli movie.* ''VideoGame/WonderProjectJ'' featured incredibly fluid animations on the Super Famicom, looking like it was taken straight from an anime directed by Creator/HayaoMiyazaki and Creator/OsamuTezuka. The N64 sequel, ''Wonder Project [=J2=]'', looks even more incredible: the N64 was not well known for 2D games, but the sprite work in this game, particularly when Josette runs up to the screen to address the player directly, look phenomenal!* Creator/{{Sony}} and Creator/GuerrillaGames were so confident in the graphical qualities of ''{{VideoGame/Killzone 2}}'', they used in-game rendering for a commercial. That you can download off the PSN store and run it on your [=PS3=] in real time.** And spared no effort on ''Killzone: Shadow Fall'' to make sure that the [=PS4=]'s prowess could be felt as a launch title.* ''VideoGame/GuiltyGear Xrd''. The most common reaction for the first trailer is "Wow, they really made some very detailed sprites [[TwoAndAHalfD HOLY CRAP THAT'S NOT 2D ANIMATION]]".** Also a strange example of awesome visual effects coming out of StylisticSuck, since the 3D models have no tween animations, creating a sort of stop-motion effect to make it look more like the 2D games, but still allows for ''Street Fighter IV''-style dynamic camera angles during certain parts like introductions, Overdrives and Instant Kills.** Junya Motomura's [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yhGjCzxJV3E presentation at GDC 2015]] only adds to this, showing out-of-the-box use of existing tools and techniques to make everything look perfectly imperfect.* ''VideoGame/JetSetRadio'' was one of the first games to use cel-shaded graphics, and it looked amazing when it came out in 2000. Both the HD remaster and the original Dreamcast version still look very good. ''Future'' has held up even better, being an Xbox game, and is among the early Xbox titles that holds up against modern releases.* ''VideoGame/AceCombatInfinity'': The explosions of enemy aircraft and ground targets look very detailed, the views of the battlefield (especially in "Dubai Night Assault") look really neat, the aircraft are very well detailed as well.* ''VideoGame/NoMansSky'' is shaping up to be nothing short of ''incredible''. See that mountain in the distance? You can hike toward it. Feel like swimming? The ocean is there waiting for you. Looking out at that AlienSky above you? You can get in your spaceship and fly toward every single one of the planets in it. Looking out at the starfield while you're on patrol? Every single one of those stars you see is its own solar system, with planets waiting to be explored, all {{procedural|Generation}}ly-generated.* ''VideoGame/AssassinsCreedUnity'': The Next-Gen Paris in the [[http://kotaku.com/heres-how-incroyable-paris-looks-in-assassins-creed-uni-1620018718 Gamescom Trailer]] is kind of surreal for how gorgeous it is. The team spent ''five thousand hours'' recreating Notre Dame. And ''damn'' does it show.* ''VideoGame/DragonballXenoverse''. ''Good God''. The visuals are just [[StealthPun off the scale]]. And none of it is pre-rendered, its all ''in-game graphics''. ** Prior to Xenoverse, ''Dragon Ball Z: Burst Limit'' held the crown for best visuals in any Dragon Ball game ''ever'', and it's hard to argue. Just look at the [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=csW9vAYxBUI opening.]] It's ''stunning''.** And prior to Burst Limit [[VideoGame/DragonBallZBudokai Dragon Ball Z Budokai 3]] was considered at the time the number one Dragon Ball game in the visual department. It's safe to say that that {{Dimps}} have a damn good record when it comes to visuals in Dragon Ball games.* ''VideoGame/{{Touhou}}'' games are known for BulletHell patterns that are NintendoHard, but are also absolutely mesmerizing, using intricate patterns with a variety of objects. Try watching a replay sometime and just watching all the beautiful patterns unfold before your eyes.* ''VideoGame/{{Bastion}}'' had some of the most gorgeous 2D art and SceneryPorn at the time. Its SpiritualSuccessor, ''VideoGame/{{Transistor}}'', ups the ante even further, to the point that even as Cloudbank is being slowly converted [[BleakLevel into an empty void of white cubes]] it still looks breathtaking.* ''VideoGame/ArmoredCore'' as a franchise tends to incorporate extremely neat CGI introductory cutscenes for each instalment. This is really upped in the ''4'' era and beyond, using photorealistic CGI to new levels of cool and augmenting the game's pacing to match the overall lightning-fast feel of the game.[[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jrUlMuGD_gY Here]][[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DjIiwiZRrSQ are]] [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PBwq1n6vsXU some]][[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c6QU2i6-BQc examples]] of such cutscenes.* ''VideoGame/DarkSoulsII'' improves upon the original ''VideoGame/DarkSouls'' in many ways, a chief factor being the graphics evolution. In addition to maintaining a solid 60 frames per second at max settings on mid-to-low-end [=PCs=], the new engine is capable of some downright gorgeous lighting and blur effects. Not only are you going to stop several times throughout your journey to stare at the glorious scenery, but also at your own clothes, many of which avert NoFlowInCGI like the plague.* ''VideoGame/DarkSoulsIII'': To put it simply, the graphics look like the graphical engine of ''{{VideoGame/Bloodborne}}'' was overlain on a ''VideoGame/DarkSouls'' game, and it looks ''beautiful''.* ''VideoGame/{{Bloodborne}}'' makes full use of the UsefulNotes/PlayStation4's available graphics output and gives us a seamless experience in a Victorian-era city. Surges of electricity and the flow of the action never looked more realistic. And ''great'' care was taken to avert NoFlowInCGI, with even the Hunter's Garb found early on sporting a [[BadassLongcoat long tail]], [[BadassCape a flowing shoulder cloak]], a loose belt ''and'' a swinging pocket watch. One of the most impressive technical feats of the game is how moving past [=NPCs=] at close distance will cause ''their'' clothes to flutter dynamically.* ''VideoGame/DmCDevilMayCry'': At one point during Bob Barbas' BossFight, he teleports you to another place where you fight mooks, and the camera behaves like an actual helicopter camera from a news program. It makes the whole encounter look like a cutscene you're controlling.* ''VideoGame/{{Splatoon}}'' has one of the best color palettes out of any video game right now, which is impressive by itself, but even moreso for a shooter and a [[spoiler: post-apocalyptic one]] at that. Everything moves smoothly and quickly and is just darn fun to watch, and the characters have a distinct 90s-esque style to them. * ''VideoGame/AssassinsCreedSyndicate'': The Aegis [[spoiler: Minerva's, and later Evie's, battle armor.]] It's pure white, flickers like a hologram and distorts [[spoiler: Evie]] the slightest bit, almost like oil in a puddle. Not to mention that it glows like an Apple of Eden.* ''VideoGame/SuperMonkeyBall'' fits this trope to a T. the character designs are cute and well-polished, and the backgrounds of the various worlds are sometimes downright incredible, especially in ''2'' and ''Banana Splitz''.* ''VideoGame/{{Fallout 4}}'': In the Institute, you get to see the process they use for creating Synths. You would think that this would just be a factory line that staples metal limbs together and puts fake flesh on top of the skin, but no. [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cwKFdvXgEyA You get to see a detailed process]] of them being put together, from their skeleton (which appears to be made of actual bones), to their flesh being woven on and their systems being kick-started by electrical shock, ending with them being dipped into a pool in which cultures form the skin on their bodies instantly.* ''VideoGame/{{Driveclub}}'', a racing game for UsefulNotes/PlayStation4, has awe-inspiring visuals. From the distant landscapes to the cars to the water effects in rain, the game is highly praised for being an absolute pinnacle of console video game graphics.* ''VideoGame/SlimeRancher'', a indie game that is still in early access, is definitely going into this trope. The water looks amazing as of version ''0.2.5''. Not to mention the (Currently Upcoming) Indigo Quarry update, which makes the freaking ''monitors'' look amazing, [[http://31.media.tumblr.com/1c2331ed12197812cb5861bbc49a5064/tumblr_inline_o4922sDwOm1t02419_500.gif just]] [[http://31.media.tumblr.com/33c5edc6afcbfcac2f235ba87caa07ab/tumblr_inline_o4926zyGrk1t02419_500.gif look at]][[http://33.media.tumblr.com/a0ccd1dcfc2d77984a4b0721d9e1dc40/tumblr_inline_o49271MYpl1t02419_540.gif it!]]* ''VideoGame/RatchetAndClank2016'': The game is a [=PS4=] exclusive, and is easily the best looking game in the series. It says a lot that the in-game graphics are ''almost'' as slick looking as the cinematic cutscenes.* Proving how far mobile gaming has come from its early years is ''Asphalt 8: Airborne'' from Gameloft, looking far closer to a home console game than a mobile title. Dozens of real-life cars are recreated in the game with highly-detailed models, tracks range from city streets to snowy tundras, and boast a variety of high-quality environmental and visual effects. Special mention goes to the Tokyo track's rain-dampened roads, showing off real-time distorted reflections of the cars and streetlights, as well as the sheer scope of tracks such as Buddha's Teachings and the Alps.* ''VideoGame/AloneInTheDark'': Say what you will about the gameplay of [[VideoGame/AloneInTheDark2008 the 2008 reboot]], but sequences like climbing around on the crumbling building and the mad drive through New York are absolutely spectacular to watch.* ''VideoGame/PanzerDragoon Orta'' was released for the Xbox back in 2002, but it somehow managed to look just as good as games released for the Xbox 360, released three years later. SceneryPorn galore, realistic body and facial animations for heroine Orta in cutscenes, and all at a rock-solid 60 frames per second.* One of the most critically acclaimed aspects of ''VideoGame/{{Ristar}}'' was its graphics, with great sprite art and gorgeous and colorful sceneries.* One android game called Raft Survival simulator. While the wood, scrap and other things look anormal, the hammer looks realistic despite being a mobile game. And the water. Oh my god, THE WATER.* The graphics of ''Anime/LittleWitchAcademia: Chamber of Time'' has been favorably compared to ''VideoGame/GuiltyGear Xrd'', using cel-shaded 3D graphics animated without tweening so as to emulate the animation from the anime series.* ''[[VideoGame/RAYSeries RayForce]]'', a 1993 sprite-based game, makes use of sprite scaling and rotating to offer some of the best quasi-3D effects of its time. Notable examples of these special effects include [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kCX1iRcCGQg stage 2]], where you whiz past a space outpost and then venture below the surface of the moon, and the end of [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nfk24Bb0NF0 stage 4]] where the earth below you cracks open and you descend past the layers of bedrock into the underground city.* Pick just about any song in ''VideoGame/GrooveCoaster'' and be prepared for a treat of trippy wireframe animations. [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oRb23yp4tuQ Here]] [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vyKH6hHF_fA are]] a couple of examples.* The Xbox 360 version of ''VideoGame/GhostRecon Advanced Warfighter'' was often hailed as the first game for the system to feel like a true generational leap and won a BAFTA award for Technical Achievement, for good reason. If the tutorial didn't impress players with its advanced heat haze effecs, lightning and detailled, well-animated models, the game's opening sequence, which had the player fly over a faithful creation of Mexico City with an huge draw distance and nary a framerate drop in sight, certainly did.* All ships in ''VideoGame/BattlefleetGothicArmada2'' are incredibly detailed in an impressive display of just how much the devs love the ''TabletopGame/Warhammer40000'' 'verse. The game also has damn good lighting that it uses to awesome effect in any pre-battle cutscene when the camera showcases the largest ships in your fleet from various angles. Seeing the light of distant suns gleaming on the gilded prow, hand-wrought armor plating and gigantic cannons of an Imperial battleship that's thundering into battle, with thrusters blazing plasma fire and planetary nebulae, titanic space stations and shattered worlds forming the backdrop, it's pretty much impossible to not feel a surge of righteous fury at the foul xenos you're about to smite. Of course, if you favor one or more of the other eleven factions, the same goes for them, too, each in their own unique, lovingly detailed visual styles. And that's not even getting into the sheer spectacle of watching kilometers-long warships blow up in enormous balls of nuclear fire.* Namco's ''Quick & Crash'' arcade game is best known for its final shot, where you shoot at a coffee mug prop -- not a mug on a screen, but an actual, physical cup -- and it appears to explode before your very eyes![[labelnote:How the illusion works]]When you hit the cup, the machine quickly withdraws the cup and shoots out a burst of pre-broken shards. At no point is anything ''actually'' broken.[[/labelnote]]

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