Textures cause project size to be huge!? Do developers compress Unreal Games to make them smaller?

I looked at the Wikpedia page for the Unreal Engine and saw a list of all the games made using the Unreal engine 4, so I decided to buy a couple of them (Soul Calibur VI and Snake Pass) for ideas/inspiration because I plan on making my own game.

I looked at my Steam folder and the saw that the game Soul Calibur VI was only 12.1 GB in size, which I find surprising because it has so much content packed into such a small amount of space.

I imported roughly 1.3 GB worth of textures into a blank project (thirty-three 8192x8192 textures), and made a material for 11 of them (because the other 22 were the specular and normal maps of the material) and the final build size (even with compressed cooked content) was about 890 MB. And the project folder size was 10 GB! Is it normal for Unreal Projects to be this huge?

And yes, I know 8192x8192 textures are pretty big, but these would be for texture atlases each “tile” will be roughly 1024x1024 or smaller…

At this rate, I’m estimating my final game will be roughly 40-60 GB, and it won’t even be AAA game.

Do you know it developers further compress games made Unreal Engine? If they do, how would I go about doing this?

Thanks in advance.

Your project folder has to contain files in their original format along with the different compressed versions of them, it’s a lot of data. That’s the case for all games. For example I have a Unity project that’s around 2GB and the output is around 50MB

Do you know if developers further compress games made with Unreal Engine, or is Soul Calibur VI really only 12.1 GB?

That’s probably the compressed download, all of the files together before it gets decompressed and then the content files are in a compressed format within that. On Steam it says it’s 20GB,

Still- is much smaller than I expected it be. But do you think the developers still compressed it at all, or if that’s even possible with the Unreal Engine, of if it’s something developers of Unreal Engine games typically do?

Also, do you think it’s worth it to use 4096x4096 texture atlases (with 512x512 tiles) instead of 8192x8192 ones (with 1024x1024 tiles). 512x512 textures take up much less space but are more blurry/pixelated looking up close.

If went that route (with the 512x512 textures) do you know of any “tricks” you would suggest to make the textures look less blurry/pixelated up close??
(I’ve already made it so the player cannot “kiss” the wall (it’s a first person game) and are always about arms length … or about three feet from the wall)

It’s possible they could compress it further, but that adds to loading times since it then has to be decompressed. Something like Soul Calibur doesn’t use huge levels and some areas might not even have baked lighting so overall it probably saves a lot of storage without having to have a lot of lightmaps.

You don’t need to manage atlases, just pay attention to the texture resolutions themselves. Try to make it as low as you’re comfortable with, but there are some things you can do to make textures nicer looking.
Using tiled maps can allow you to have a higher level of detail and you can control where they show with lower resolution masks or with vertex painting. You can also use decals to add unique detail over tiled textures.

No, I wasn’t asking if they could, but I was asking if they DID compress it or not, and do most people who make games with Unreal Engine do that?

Atlases save a ton of space. Believe it or not, a bunch of 512x512 images take up more space that one 4096x4096 texture atlas. I’ve tested.

Not sure what you mean by “tiled maps” and how that’s different than texture atlas??

When you create a build out of UE4 it already compresses the files, so definitely the files are compressed in Soul Calibur, the question would be if they do more compression or if they even implement their own version of compression instead.
For GPU memory the texture dimensions control the amount of memory it uses even if the source file is compressed and small, so 4x 1024 textures is equal to one 2048 texture
As far as atlases go, UE4 does some of that itself

Tiled maps are repeated maps in the material, so it allows you to get small detail on a large surface but it’s a repeating texture so you need some way of breaking it up so that people can’t so easily tell that it’s repeating.

Okay, thanks!

All AAA games and UE4 with defaults settings use compressed textures.(DXT) This make texture already 4 to 8 times smaller in size. Cooked package is also compressed which further reduce size of textures around to 50%. Atlases does not save any space and actually can waste memory because of inefficient packing and required padding to avoid bleeding. They also cause texture streaming to be more inefficient. Only use atlases if you can save a lot of draw calls by using them.

So does that mean by setting the compression to “vector displacement” that makes the texture bigger in file size than DXT? Is it normal for DXT to have so many compression artifacts or how to avoid? Because that’s why I tried using vector displacement compression in the test.

Also, what would you suggest besides texture atlases?

If I remember correctly “vector displacement” just disable compression.

For minimal memory size and maximal quality we pack our textures like this. Texture1 has albedo in rgb and roughness in a , we use default compression for this.(BC3) Texture2 has just normal info and we use default normal map compression which just stores r and g channel and compress them individually.(BC5) This is most important texture and usually biggest in size. Then we have optional metalness texture using Alpha compression.(BC4) This is usually really small like 25% of the albedo/roughness texture. Then we have optional emissive texture which uses default compression without alpha channel.(BC1) This is usually half of the size of the albedo texture. To hide compression artefacts and low res look we usually have really small(64-128) detail normal map with really small weight just to add some additional detail in close ups.

Thank you.

Do you know whether it’s better to tile the textures in Unreal or in Maya? Doesn’t Maya have more control/precision over UVs?