Quoted from Rarehero:
What’s laughable is that you don’t understand that tech wasn’t the issue. Stern had 1 or 2 guys doing dot animation. For an LCD you need an animation crew that’s well versed in modern traditional & 3D animation. It costs more & is a different pipeline. To keep on Stern’s schedule, they couldn’t just switch quickly. On top of that, licensors were letting them get away with likenesses & footage on dots that they are sometimes not allowed to do in HD full color.
I believe you could find 20 2D animators and 20 3D modelers (having experience in said things, they're all over the place) per 1 dot-matrix animator. You really think it's the other way around?
Perhaps Stern probably just already had the dot-matrix people and was nervous to rock the boat, but 2D animators and 3D modelers are both one of those jobs where the people are plentifully basically begging for work.
Now that they're doing 3D-modeled graphics (thankfully) which they weren't doing in the earliest games like Aerosmith, obviously that requires yet another set of skills and hands, albeit it seems they are going totally 2D animation or totally 3D animations (GUI always being 2D obviously) so never "both".
I'd assume it would be way easier and more cost efficient to find a 2D artist or a 3D modeler than some of the dot matrix stuff they were doing, let alone the time it takes.
Additionally, it seems like most of these people also tend to work alone or with a small group.
The animation is the easy part and basically the cherry on top of the total game. I wouldn't be surprised if a single skilled animator could crank out all the animations in a game in a week to three weeks. It's not really that big of an undertaking.
I'm sure dot matrix animation is a way more complicated process than an artist drawing freehand on a tablet and creating different frames of animation (particularly easy in the digital age now that we have virtual tablets, and can save and erase to create minor changes for animation), or a 3D modeler crafting things up in Blender.
Add pre-recorded pre-existing live action footage (where permitted) that couldn't be done before, with no work whatsoever, to fill in the gaps like The Beatles, and you have a big time and work advantage actually.