Shader complexity vs mesh density
Ive just been watching this tutorial about foliage: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kMCsp2Cu5oM
Between 8:00 and 8:30 he mentions that rather than using alpha on the foliage why not just model it.
So I have a foliage asset (a grass clump), after complete processing (baking the individual models onto fewer planes). it is about 16 Tris, Modeled it was in the region of 140
Is just using the whole mesh (the 140tri version) really a viable option? and how does this balance in performance vs using alpha masks? obviously the modeled foliage would provide a noticeably better visual but it seems like a lot of polys to be drawing considering there could potentially be hundreds of instances being drawn at any one time.
asked Jun 17 '18 at 04:31 PM in Rendering
People have already tried it out (see here). Summary:
The reason why you would expect that to happen is simple. The further away the mesh is, the smaller it gets. Therefore it covers less of your screen and produces less overdraw. The extra cost of the increased poly count does not decrease with distance. So what ends up happening is that you lose the benefits of having less overdraw, as you display more and more grass, because the number of vertices explodes. Here, straight from the thread: "[...] a few extra triangles per mesh will start to add up when you have millions of them in the scene."
answered Jun 17 '18 at 09:55 PM
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