Issue isn’t about the AI or remote player, issue is about unknown conditions in multiplayer. Meaning when you make a multiplayer that doesn’t have a set number of players. AKA not a deathmatch type where it’s always 8vs8. But a free MMO style like WoW.
You can’t tell if you will have 10 people show up for 20,000 polygons, or 10,000 people show up for 20,000,000 polygons on the screen. 20,000 GPUs snore through, 20million they start to cough a bit. Then you start to add all the scene stuff and dynamic particles that are causing lighting and dynamic lighting to be calculated, the fact those 10,000 people show up and all dump a billion spells / rockets in the area for a few million more polygons, and the GPU starts yelling uncle.
So that is where polygon counts come into play, where you don’t know how many people or AI bots might show up to the party. If you have a static world, with static number of players, you can go much higher. polycounts cause you know you what GPUs can handle so that range is super high, cause it’s a static number, my scene always has X polygons in it and that never changes. With multiplayer that changes to my scene has from 1,000 polygons in it up to billions, and I don’t have a lot of control over that. Without putting things in like queue lines, and instancing of areas / worlds, etc.