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Arma 3 poly count best practices

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I'd suggest the optimums for the visual LODs are roughly:


Weapons ~Ideally less than 10k polys (consider that attachments might add a lot of extra polys, and there will be lots of people in a group holding). More than 15k is probably not good.

Vehicles ~20-32k polygons for the base vehicle (hull, wheels/tracks, heavy weapon turret, lights, windows/vision blocks, doors/hatches, low-poly version of interior if seen from outside). However it will go upwards of that when adding extra external details like mounted machine guns, bags, fuel cans, spare track sections etc. If say a tank, demands a lot of small external detail parts, it's not unusual for there to be 40k-50k+ triangles, but you're probably never going to see more than 4 tanks at a time up close anyway.


Pilot view LODs can be more detailed - certainly for guns you want your sights to be nice and round in the view pilot LOD, but that doesn't matter at all in third person view

And with vehicles the pilot LOD interior with modelled switches and dials things and things will have a higher polycount than is necessary from outside. But you can then also save polys by removing parts of the external vehicle that are not visible from inside (wheels, underside of the chassis etc).

So workflow would be to create the model as a view Pilot model, and then optimise it accordingly


Ultimately though, it's more important to:

  • Reduce the section count (number of texture+material groups shown in Object Builder)
  • Make good resolution LODs (half the polycount for each LOD stage until you're down to 200-400 polys IIRC)
  • Make a good low-poly shadow LOD with no unnecessary detail in it, other than the basic silhouette of the object (shadows are a big, big performance hog)
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