I am new in game development, but I have some knowledge in Maya and 3ds Max, I want to create pirate ship for game. So I spoke with many 3d artists and there are different opinions about low polygons and high polygons modelling. I am an iOS developer too so I know that it's hard for computer to process many polygons, so we should reduce amount of faces as much as we can. But my question is much more connected to 3D.

Do I need to create low polygons model at start and then smooth it to increase amount of faces or do I need to create high polygons model and then reduce amount of edges, faces and etc?

  • \$\begingroup\$ I'm currently a student for game development. As a programmer I am always using low polygon meshes to test/debug. As a high polygon mesh takes so long to load when I just want to test if it is facing in proper direction or not. After everything is funcitoning properly, I move into higher polygon models to test if lighting, and materials look good. When I'm ready to submit/release I switch into the final High Polygon mesh models. To answer your question though, it is most likely up to whoever you are working with. If they want to deal with multiple polygon models during testing or not. \$\endgroup\$
    – mythos
    Nov 25 '15 at 23:27
  • \$\begingroup\$ @sakul_ca thanks for answer, but I meant about Maya for example should create for example cube with 16 faces or with 4 at start for example. Of cube is just example. \$\endgroup\$ Nov 25 '15 at 23:33
  • \$\begingroup\$ You can use the technique in which used in most of the 3d games. If the object is too far away and not possible (!) to see its details, you can render it in low-poly form, otherwise the objects close to the cameras can be rendered in high-poly form with all of the effects, shaders etc. \$\endgroup\$ Nov 25 '15 at 23:43

I think your question is about modelling assets for your game and whether you should start with a low or high poly prototype.

To me it makes sense to prototype quickly and therefore choose whichever takes you the least amount of time...

That doesn't always mean low-poly (though in general it is usually quicker to build a prototype model out of simple primitives than it would be to model something accurately). If for example you found a high-poly asset available to you online or somewhere else, then you shouldn't be worrying about number of polygons at such an early stage and should feel free to use that model accordingly.

I have always modelled starting from primitives, adding complexity until I'm satisfied that the output stylistically matches what I had in mind.


Okay you'll never use high poly models in the actual game itself.

The purpose of a high-poly model is to provide your low-poly silhouette model "DETAIL" information for baking.

Two different methods for creating models.

1) Low to High

2) High to Low

Low to High is for modelers that are more methodical. Like Maya Artist to Zbrush

High to Low is more for sculpture type artist. Like Zbrush to Maya

no approach is better it's based on the ARTIST

Learn more about UVING, RETOPOLOGIZING, and baking maps for games. This knowledge will help you


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