Resource Budgeting Questions

Hey there fellow developers, I have a few questions regarding optimal vertex count for different types of meshes.

Now to begin I will state that my current project is intended solely for PC and PS4, maybe XBOne if I can squeeze enough power from it.

I’ve attached my current statistics log for those interested to take a look at.

So in each scene I’d ideally like to have:

six or seven buildings, Antique Victorian Revival style architecture with an asylum-esque feel.

A Blizzard-beaten terrain with a low draw distance because of the snowstorms.

I’d like the environments to look as realistic as possible, so I plan on have a variety of masked deferred decal materials and actors.

My characters are based on Mixamo characters( Around 15k tris, and 45k verts), but I create new DIffuse, Cavity, AO, Displacement, and Normal maps in Zbrush by converting Mixamo’s included Normal maps into displacement maps, applying them to the mesh in Zbrush, cleaning up the details and carving out new ones.

The character maps are usually like this:

Body diffuse: 2048px/4096px DXT1
Normal: 1024px/2048px/4096px/8192px BC5
Displacement: 512px/1024px/2048px DXT1
AO: 1024px DXT1

PN Tringles Tessellation factor of 1

Now for most objects I tend to use a 2k diffuse, normal, and a third map with specular, AO, and roughness in each of the RGB channels of a DXT1 map.I also tend to use world aligned textures for immovable objects and structures.Smaller objects, I’m fine at 1k, but I really would prefer not to go any lower. Things usually look decent with a lightmap resolution for 64px, although I haven’t yet done much experimenting with higher resolutions, so I don’t really know if there wopuld be any drastic improvement in rendering quality if I upped those values.

So based on the info I have provided, could someone give me a bit of a better idea of how many tris or verts I can put on props? I find that sticking to <1000 verts for most objects and have their smoothing groups provide a nice result is getting increasingly difficult for certain things.

Any advice would be extremely appreciated, thank you!

What type of game, third person, RTS, FPS? For current gen games, 40k tris isn’t unusual for a character. For props I would just use as much tris as you need, up to 5k is fine for props depending on the asset, how large it is, and how much it is used. Tricount isn’t normally the issue, optimizing draw calls is a bigger deal.

Don’t forget to use normal maps especially for low poly props if you want some extra detail.

The game has been planned out to allow the player to engage in four dramatically different playstyles, but for the sake of the argument, let’s say it’s a third-person “psycho thriller” horror game that is staged primarily in an underground research complex along with some relatively sparsely populated winter outdoor environments.

Also, do you mind expanding on what exactly you mean by drawcells? Most of my experience has been in photorealistic rendering engines and drawcells is a term I’ve never needed to know.

EDIT: I think a relatively decent comparison would be some of the indoor chapters in the game Evil Within. They’re similar in structure in style to what I’m aiming for.