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Are There any Trees with Green Shader Complexity?

I have purchased a lot of trees on the Marketplace and they all have a lot of red and white when you press the F5 key to view shader complexity, is this normal, is this ok? Have you seen any trees that are green when you press F5?

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Product Version: UE 4.21
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asked Jan 16 '19 at 01:00 PM in Rendering

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JohnADaniels
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It is normal. You are bound to use a shading model with opacity masking for the leaves and it is more expensive than opaque materials most of the time.

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answered Jan 16 '19 at 01:07 PM

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Jacky
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avatar image JohnADaniels Jan 16 '19 at 01:31 PM

Do you know of any trees that are do not have the red or white?

avatar image ThompsonN13 Jan 16 '19 at 02:58 PM

you could always make your own trees. theres a bunch of programs out there to do so. i know cggeek has a tutorial on making trees in blender. or you could use a different art style which uses different methods. generally from what ive seen with realistic trees people tend to either have one large poly for an entire branch which requires translucent parts or they do each leaf individually as a plane which again has translucent bits. if you created your own tree though you could model the leaf shape precisely to eliminate the need for translucency which would give you simpler complexity.

avatar image JohnADaniels Jan 16 '19 at 04:01 PM

Thank you for the information on how to make the trees. I would love to but I really have almost no time, I work full time and also have 2 kids and I am making this game in spare time.

A guy named Nils from Germany makes amazing foliage and he is planning to make trees but i do not know how long until they will be available so I was looking for well optimized trees that are ready to drop in from the market place.

Noe of the trees for sale show the F5 Shared complexity shots so it is hard to tell which ones are optimized.

avatar image Jacky Jan 16 '19 at 04:42 PM

As long as your trees have SpeedTree kind of optimization you should be fine(as fine as having foliage inside your level goes. Large scale foliage always has a cost and balancing quality&performance is up to you) If you could model each leaf and used opaque material for them then you would be having trouble with poly count. You'll have issues with both technique when it comes to large scale foliage. So making sure your trees have proper LOD's and billboards is more important really. Epic also has GDC talk on how they handled trees that are far away from the camera:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KHWquMYtji0

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hOMjp6H10Mg

avatar image JohnADaniels Jan 16 '19 at 05:36 PM

Thank you for the information and links. I will check them out.

avatar image JohnADaniels Jan 16 '19 at 05:40 PM

Jacky, In the video you sent about Fortnight optimization the Trees have no RED!! :) I want trees with little to no red. All the trees I have seen so far in the Marketplace and lots of red and White which is the worst.

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avatar image JohnADaniels Jan 16 '19 at 06:15 PM

Excellent video on performance, thank you.

avatar image Jacky Jan 17 '19 at 12:30 PM

Check this out as well: https://shaderbits.com/blog/octahedral-impostors

Also keep in mind that Fortnite's trees are stylized and dont have as many leaf meshes as a realistic tree. And i dont know how much of those leaf meshes are occluded by texture so i can't comment on it. But here's more insight as to the why the shader complexity you are generally seeing:

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This plant is also accessible in realistic rendering project. It has a basic masked material with SSS shading model. As you can see the masked pixels of the leaf look green because you dont have to render beyond that pixel. However the empty space can go from green to white depending on the complexity of the shader behind those pixels, and it can happen more drastically when translucent/masked materials are rendered on top of each other. So as you see even the simplest material will give you non-green areas for the masked out parts of the material. The way to minimize this is to make the leaf meshes as close to the texture's mask shape as possible. Most tree models use simple quads so there can be a ton of unmasked portions depending on the tree type. If you model the leaf meshes to something close to the leaf shape then you need to be careful with poly count. So as i said before it's all about balancing and optimization if you want a lot of foliage in your levels.

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