Efficient polycount...


aspiring game artist here. For the past 6 month or so I have been working relentlessly to learn 3d modeling for game, and everything I’ve read or learnt taught me to always mind the holy polycount (please note I am only working on static meshes so far). And so I always remove the faces that won’t be seen in game, as a good practice. That allows me to create entire interior scenes with very few polygons.

Some days ago I thought it was time to start creating levels with my growing model library and sarted messing around with UE4 template to see how the example assets were made, and oh boy was I stunned! The simplest door frame sm have 1k faces! A freaking TV has 600…? A couch has 4k or so…!?

So the question is, is everything I’ve learned garbage and UE4 is so awesome I can apply subsurf to my game models and fancy things like that ^^ OR those example assets are just eye candy and not actually usable game assets?

And finally, why would you want to make a 4k faces sliding door when you could use texturing to create the same level of detail…?

I guess that’s my questions but I’d be grateful if someone could enlighten me.

As things advance the need for low poly counts isn’t as big of a deal. That being said, it’s a matter when you’re working on something to try and think of how important the detail on that object is. Usually I shoot for the lowest poly count and then think about how much I want details

Yeah, I get that you don’t have to make a 10 poly door anymore unless you’re developping for mobile. But that doesn’t really explain why you’d need 4k for said door either especially with how powerfull UE4 mats seem to be. I’m really puzzled.

There is no real answer to your question. It depends. Some of the example assets were made just for the sake of having it look pretty (the effects demo for example, I’d never do that in production), where as other assets are perfectly reasonable. It really depends so much on each asset, its use, the game you are doing and so on.

That said 4k or 1k for a door, it is barely going to make any difference at all to performance unless you intend to have 4000 doors in your level or so… Doesn’t mean you should waste stuff either and work in a bad way, just that it at the end of the day is not that important.

600 for a TV sounds reasonable by the way.

Thank you for your answer.

I guess the ressources I am using to learn must be a bit too old then - by the reference metrics I have learned with, 4k is a lot for a complex static mesh like a destroyed vehicle, so when I saw this count for a door I was puzzled. I guess I should be watching your Solus DVD to see what your modular level assets look like, polycount wise.

They are really low poly usually :slight_smile:

Just different approaches and dependent on the game.

Also, bear in mind that shaders and textures also have overhead. It may be more efficient in some cases to use a higher poly model and not rely on a super custom single use texture in order to save a few polygons.