Personally, i think that advances in the graphics in games is no longer that worthwhile, since about 2005, specificially the games battlefield 2 and the source engine.
HOWEVER I SHOULD STATE THIS NOW: BF2 could use a bit longer distance in its LoD's, both model and geometry, but view distance on 4km maps is good enough, could use more physics-based obojects, and source engine also looks good
when properly utilized.
PC games today such as ArMA2 and Crysis look awsome, no doubt, but they aren't that much more awsome, espicially on medium-low hardware, medium setting, when compared to those gammes in full res, full AA,, high setting. Its just that the bump-mapping but slightly lower res diffuse texture. doesn't seem to jive with me, and is the main reason why i prefer the look of America's army 2.X..X to AA3, in fact, i don't really like the look of most all of the games using unreal3, even Gears of War on consoles
now of course, FSU looks awsome, espicially some of the bump-mapped ships, but space-based game's visual quality is largly in the talent of the modelers, while the more 'earthly' mainstream games have to deal with enviroments, which i am sure consume a few resources
As far as i am concerned, there is something to be said about a game with full-resolution textures, nice models which, yes, sometimes use hexagons for minigun barrels, but with spec mapping that hides it, as opposed to full-dynamic-lit 12-sided barrels, and yes, are not rendering a million tri's at a time.
am i crazy in thinking this, or do other agree with me?