Hey everyone! I need some advice or artistic ideas. I am working on my personal computer game during my free time. I have recreated 1:5000 scale Lithuania world map for it, where I procedurally generate all the environments. Game takes place in a fantasy setting, hence, I am also generating fantasy buildings. One type of the building, for the capital city and the large cities, are the gothic-styled estates. The ground level is covered with fog, so aristocrats are trying to live above the ground levels in tall buildings closer to the sunlight.
The problem is, because I need to display more then 15000 buildings at some instances of the map at the same time (I am using Unreal Engine), my polygon budget is quite limited, around 500-2000 per building maximum.
I made complex Houdini script, which outputs me all the buildings like that:
The problem is, that when I try to add details, I immediately run out of budget. But, gothic architecture is veeeery detailed. And because I am generating hundred of thousandths of buildings (remember, I am recreating almost full-scale country territory) and can not rely on the high-detailed mesh baking or anythings. I tried to apply some textures, like, with gothic facades, but it looks silly, as I have a lot of very different building shapes. I feel like I need some kind of artistic solution here, but can’t think of any. Fantasy setting allows me to cut many corners, and yet, I struggle to find some magic formula, which will yield me nice building style and low poly budget. Any ideas are welcomed