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Having many npcs in a Scene

Hi guys,lately i discuss about a game with a friend of mine who has a good story for game making. We have reach an obstacle and that is that he wants to have many npcs in a scene because it takes place in a stadium. Knowing that you can’t have many npc characters in a scene/lvl, how can I achieve it though. Below you can see an image from hitman 2 which is what we want to achieve.

I know from first hand that I cant have many npcs around for performance’s reasons because at the current game that I work for, we tried to put many npcs and the FPS went down to 10. Of course one of the reasons for that is that our models(under our directors’s orders)have 45-60k polygons,plus these npcs were Blueprints. Any tip will be appreciated.

I think people focus too much on vertex count and ignore the many many other factors that brings down performance. What kind of lighting is being used? what is the complexity of the shaders? how many drawcalls is the scene consuming? Texture Size? Lightmap density? did you use the editor’s optimization modes to check any of this?

While 45k-60k seems like a reasonable polycount for a character, a stadium full of them will need LODs.

You’ll need to work with blueprints to instance them and reduce the draw calls, that’s what is going to make the most performance impact. Games that have crowds have specific solutions for them.

Thanks for your replies. My first goal is to not have many polycounts.Is just an NPC, so even 20k polys are good enough if they have been made properly by the 3d modeller. Also I have thought about LODS, so this is going to be one of my options.Now about the blueprint solutions @darthviper107 ,I am trying to find something on the internet and I haven’t so far(probably haven’t searched it properly on the web).Do you have any particular example for what you have mentioned?