08-12-2011, 08:28 AM
Heh heh - I think anyone in a position to answer this question (anyone you should listen to, anyway) probably knows what matte painting is...
Matte paintings most certainly are used in games - I've been offered work doing them in the past. Not all games, obviously - but as games and films move closer together, it's a technique that's being used. I think racing games are probably the most obvious application, but there are plenty of others, as well as in-house cutscenes.
Limiting yourself to 'matte painting for games' only is probably going to be a problem (especially as a junior), but it's not an either/or question.
A more important point is that outside of game design a 'gamer' and a 'game developer' are not in any way related. Just because you enjoy playing them doesn't mean you will enjoy making them, and I know a LOT of people who have made that mistake.