Hi, I 've got the need to put about 50 pedestrian entities on an exterior scene, for the base ai entity i use the character class blueprint and a custom ai class that inerith from the base ai controller class, the class of ai got a simple task get a random point and walk to that point, i’ve got a timer that check if has passed a certain ammount of time, if it is true then get another random point to walk to and reset the timer. this simple task impact on the frame rate between 10-15 frame per second. Is there something i should know about? I’m sure it is not the number of triangles because the models have 3 lod wich the smallest has about 800 triangles and when i detach the ai from the character class the counter regain those 10-15 frames.
I think skeletal animations of those characters are cpu intensive. Also if they have collisions with each other, that can drop fps greatly. You should also try crowd control AI, it works better in crowds. Also if they affect navigation, it will be updated for every single of them.
Check materials they have and shadows, make them not cast shadows and use unlit materials to see if that is any real impact.
But i also found out that 40-50 skeletal mesh actors is about limit for unreal.