View Full Version : How much is low poly these days?

03 March 2002, 03:26 PM
Hi guys, well, I'm doing a course on 3dsmax and I'm planning to work on the games industry.
Looking to this forum I sometimes see models of 500 polys and sometimes others of about 2000, and in a past thread some people said nowadays games can handle characters of up to 30k polys (maybe under GameCube, I can't remember).

Well, my question is, in current real projects, how many polys can we have in a model? Lets say the main character or a secondary one, under PC, Gamecube, Xbox or PS2.

Best regards,
Ramiro Lopez

03 March 2002, 04:02 AM
Hmm, that's not such an easy question. It depends on the technologie that's available. And that's what makes your question difficult to anwer. 3D Technologie is evolving verry fast these days. I think it's verry difficult for the game-developers to create a game and to know in advance what the computers/consoles of the future will be able to handle.

If u make models out of 1500 to 3000 polys these days, I think it'll do just fine. But in one year I estimate that the technologie will be there to handle up to 15000 polys per character!!!

But I have to warn u!!!
I'm not a proffessional in these things. I know little about those things and try to be so up to date as I can. So, don't be angry if my information about the poly-count in one year isn't correct!

It's a fact that if you're a good modeler, you don't need a high polycount. And good texturing can do WONDERS!!! That's what makes the difference between a good and a bad low-poly modeler :cool:

Chris Ollis
03 March 2002, 03:32 PM
I seem to remember that the current numbers are something like 10,000 for a main character and down from there.

I'm pretty sure the new Lara Croft model is around that number, and the Unreal 2 ones are possibly 12,000

(sorry if I'm wrong, these numbers just seem to be familiar)

Also, since the introduction of Multi-Res style technology the need for Lower Poly models has dramatically dropped as the processor can simply convert the main mesh as required (characters in the distance etc)

But it also depends on the game type, a FPS will need numerous characters to populate a world so the count should take that in to consideration, where as if you want to do something like Tekken, then the count should go way up, as the processor doesn't have to worry about anything but the two main roles.

03 March 2002, 07:02 PM
Well now. Let the former skinner speak. J/k. Uhmm, for Quake 3, the game community is not happy when you go over about 2000, unless ur model is really phatty. FOr UT it is about the same. For Unreal2 I think you are going to be able to have up to about 5000, in case you want to make a model for an upcoming game.


Chris Ollis
03 March 2002, 07:07 PM

"Key new technology features include a tenfold boost in character poly counts and a hundredfold increase for environments"

Seeing as I used to skin UT characters (anyone play my comic pack?!) and am certain they were around the 900-1000 poly area, I think my assumption of 10,000 poly figures was quite good! :D

03 March 2002, 10:50 PM
the number of poly's in a low poly model all depends on what you're aiming to develop for. As has been mentioned, if its for UT, then between 800 and 1,500 is a good figure, Q3 goes from maybe 850 to 2000, and the new technologies in the up coming engines allow much higher counts (Start around 2,500, work up to maybe 8,000).

That said if you're developing for non FPS style games, or maybe not even for PC, then the polycount can go the other way.

I'm working on a title for the GBA, and it requires a realtime character in there. The lowest number of poly's used for it (lowest LOD if you will) was only 150 triangles, the highest was more like 650, but there's naff all else on the screen for that.

Just so you know that more poly's is not *always the best way to go, practice low, as well as medium counts.

03 March 2002, 11:59 PM
i'm currently working on a upcoming Xbox title (which will go unnamed) using the unreal engine. the player characters in our case are around 4K and the NPC's are around 3K. technically we could use up to 8,000 polys but weighting a transforming all those vertices is what really slows down the engine. but that all depends on what kind of game it is.

03 March 2002, 12:43 AM
And donīt forget tri-stripping, very important.

The polycount is all depending on what kind of game it is, compare a fighting game (two characters at once) with something like State of Emergency (up to 200 characters at the same time, I think).

03 March 2002, 03:09 AM

check out bobos reply on this link!!!!

i found this polycount info very usefull!!!!


03 March 2002, 04:20 AM
Thank all of you guys for the information, and your link was very useful dtek8!
I love these forums :D

Again, thank you.

03 March 2002, 05:04 AM
Hey Harl!!!

Did you ever finish that phatty gun for q3? Last I checked (long ago), it was supposed to be a lightning gun, but you changed your mind and had not decided yet.

Drew "FrageNSTEIN" Haynes

03 March 2002, 06:10 AM
It's on the site and available for DL now Frag, in fac there's a preview on these very boards:

In fact go post on it, could do with a bump ;)

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