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No shadows on foliage itself if static lighting

I am making a long, linear forest scene where the lights will never change. I'm assuming I can set everything to static with no dynamic light and bake all the lighting in the scene to improve performance (+20fps for me). But the only way for me to cast shadows on foliage trees is if everything is set to dynamic + moving. If any of those are untrue, the trees will have no shadows on itself, looking really weird.

These are the options I messed with: Foliage: Cast Dynamic Shadow (False will also have them cast no shadow on landscape) Directional Light: If Static, casts no shadows on foliage. If Movable and Cast Dynamic Shadows is false, same thing happens.

Is there a way to set only static shadows & static directional light and have shadows on foliage itself?

Product Version: UE 4.9
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asked Nov 06 '15 at 10:23 PM in Rendering

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Hello michaelleli,

I have ran a few tests and tracked down existing issues with static lighting on foliage. Currently this is on the to-do list for better support for static lighting for instance static meshs's.

Currently I do not believe this is a feature for UE4. I realize this is frustrating and your scene can take a rather large performance hit. There are work arounds for using dynamic lighting. I.E mesh distance fields/culling/ and a number of other ways to optimize when using dynamic lighting.

However, I can add this to the list of users that are asking for this feature to be supported in UE4. I do not have an ETA nor a guarantee for when or if this will be a feature.


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answered Nov 11 '15 at 09:05 PM

avatar image michaeleeli Nov 11 '15 at 09:32 PM

Thank you for your reply! I would love to see this feature as I can see it being very important in cellphone games. I guess what most people do on UE4 cellphone games is draw fake shadows (or bake it in the 3D program) on the mesh itself and have the game unlit, but that takes away the awesome lighting features from UE4. Anyways, thanks again for letting me know =)

avatar image FilipeTessaro Jan 21 '16 at 01:02 PM


Sad to hear that! My map has some foliages, and with dynamic shadows it runs in 28fps, with static light it runs in 41fps! Too much perfomence hit!

It would be great if foliage can cast static shadow (The foliage can move with the wind, but the shadow don´t need to... in my case)

Currently, the foliage static mesh is ugly and deformed, hope to hear about it soon. Maybe in 4.11 version with new light improvementes!


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