I feel relevant!
A studio called the House of Moves just basically did what I'm doing on this thesis project. Only they used the unreal engine instead of the Source engine. Also, they were paid cashmoney to do it, whereas I (as a student) am doing quite the opposite.
Small differences aside, they did the same project: used production tools to make stuff, rendered it in a game engine, and saved lots of time rendering. In the article they mention some of the limitations that they faced, and some of their statements mirror my own description of game-engine limits on previous blog posts. Some of the similarities are almost word-for-word.
So yeah, further proof that this is a solid idea and that I am on the right track. Here's the article if you'd like to take a peek: