Haha, yeah, there are a couple of silhouette-style games out there now. Limbo has definitely influenced me, even though it never was finished. Patapon also was a nice experience. And then there's a shortfilm called Jasper Morello which just blew me away.
I'll try to give the whole thing my own twist though. The main idea was to come up with something where a simple plate could be created in under 10 minutes (the woods plate I posted didn't even take 5 minutes for the pure creation part) and where I could implement 3d elements without having to go through the whole production pipeline (fixing UVs, texturing, etc.) - so you could create animated 3d elements in a very, very short amount of time.
The beauty of the whole thing is that I can simply concept everything in photoshop, create some dynamics like animated grass in Maya (even though the sprite editor is still really cumbersome when it comes to importing animation frames, hope the next version is better in that regard) and simply layout everything in Construct where I can still play around with layers and parallax scrolling and so on, to give the level compositions way more depth and believability.
After working for quite a bit of time in 3d, I SO love this workflow, it really helps staying focused on what's really important, you can make changes really quickly, etc. - it's just freaking awesome.
I uploaded an early composition test I did two weeks ago here:http://www.thomasmahler.com/files/corrupted_01.exe
Move around with the arrow keys, jump with Z, Tab to go to the next layout.
Keep in mind that the style wasn't yet fully worked out, so it looks a bit clunky. Still, I do intend of using simple brush strokes to suggest environmental elements. It's almost like you can storyboard a game while the engine is simple enough to create the game while you're going. Lovin' it!
Oh, and I temporarily used tracks from the Princess Mononoke Soundtrack to set the mood