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Pre-rendered scenarios

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Hi, all. I'm looking for some cool sprites to make a side-scroller game. I love the oddworld series (Abbe's oddysee, Abbe's exoddus...) and I was looking for some sprites of the main hero: Abbe. So I got to some sites where I read that those games were made using a technic of background called pre-rendered backgrounds. What does it mean? For what I saw, the background is pretty real and the interaction with it is awesome. How is it made and what is the difference between this and the tradicional background? PS: I haven't found good sprites for Abbe yet. If anyone knows where I can get them please tell me. Thanks.

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It just means that the environments were created in a 3d modelling tool and then rendered as 2d images for use as backgrounds. Ultimately though, they are just pictures, same as any other game.

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