An article on GameDaily today reminisces about a better time - a time when FMV was a key part of story telling in games. The article begins by noting how many games based on movies tend to disappoint, and conversely how many movies based on games fare badly. The rest of the article goes in depth in to how FMV became such an essential story telling device and why it is now a rarity. Wing Commander and Privateer 2 are of course mentioned as key users of FMV.
For the most part, I can understand why FMV games have pretty much gone extinct. It must save tons of money and effort to simply animate a character instead of trying to actually direct a real person. Maybe it costs less to have an actor's voice in comparison to having the whole actor. Budgets soured for games like the Wing Commander series, which brought in talents like Mark Hammill (Star Wars) and Thomas Wilson (Back to the Future) to play the main roles. Still, I would prefer to watch those cut-scenes and play those games again than sit through ten minutes of the feature-length movie that was shot on a shoestring budget.You can read the full story here.