I am building a social/chat/dating app which I would like to build in Unity as I want some 3D graphics, geo-location functions, and possibly mini-games you can play together with others.
From a functional perspective, Unity seems perfect for this. It allows all the features I want in one easily adaptable and expandable package that supports Android and iOS.
However, I read one post on unity.com from a few years ago where someone said regarding using Unity for a similar purpose: "Unity is first and foremost a GAME engine. Therefore it does many stuff that doesn't make sense in the regular application, such as redrawing everything every frame. This would just make a battery eater."
I am wondering if this is still the case or if there is any practical solution for this. Does Unity continuously refresh the screen or constantly render 3D objects on screen with each refresh?
For example, let's say hypothetically you had a screen where you were just text messaging through the Unity app with someone (mimicking basic SMS but through the Unity app) and at the top of the screen there was a 3D rendered header graphic like a logo or 3D graphic menu.
In principle, you would only need to refresh/re-render the screen when a new message is exchanged, the screen is scrolled, or someone clicks a menu option to trigger a menu function or animation. If it continuously re-renders the entire screen and top 3D graphic every frame endlessly at say 30 fps, this would be incredibly wasteful.
Would there be any way to limit re-renders to only happen on certain events and thus make this practical?