Oh, for sure Resident Evil and Resident Evil Zero win the cake on graphics. Yeah, they use pre-rendered backgrounds, but it's the final effect that counts, not the way of making it. It's about which looks better, and that's Resident Evil, quality-wise. Metroid Prime looks awesome, though, along with Starfox Adventures (it's about all it had going for it, methinks).
Did anybody else notice how they only started panning the backgrounds in Resident Evil Zero? I mean, it's such a blatantly obvious effect to use, since it's about the only background movement possible with pre-rendered. They even used it in Zelda to on their pre-rendered backgrounds. But I've only seen in on the latest RE. Strange.
I dunno, I mean, sometimes graphics can be good enough that they override the other stuff. It's not often, since usually those games come across shallow and no fun at all, but games like Resident Evil I was almost playing just to see the next amazing area (I mean, after all, the gameplay itself wasn't going to change much after the first 10 minutes ^_^ )