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LODs (Level of Detail) models are a very important feature to help performance.

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If you have been on the Hyrule Conquest discord at any point since 2018, you've probably heard me mention LODs at some point. It's a particular subject I bring up a lot. What exactly are LODs you might ask? LOD stands for "Level of Detail." It is also a very common technique used in video games to optimize and dramatically improve framerates and performance. What LODs do is "swap out" higher poly, better looking models that each up valuble performance resources with lower poly, more simplistic and less taxing models the further away from a camera any particular object is.

A sample of LODs on a cube, followed by an Ordonian Goat.

This method is used in countless video games and is essential to the RTS genre, a genre of games that generally has hundreds if not thousands of models running around doing things on screen and most of the time they are quite distant from the camera. The only problem? 0AD has not supported LODs for years. You may have noticed that when the unit counts in Hyrule Conquest get pretty high, the frame rate starts to tank even on a decent gaming PC. I have always pushed for high quality visuals and detailed models, and it's very taxing on the engine to display them all. Over the last few years I've had the workaround "Low Poly Patch," but this is not an ideal solution.

This is all changing however. The 0AD devs have a rudimentary LOD system in place now, and I've spent the last few weeks created LODs for all the game's existing models. There are frankly hundreds of models in the game at the moment though, and it's been quite time consuming and there are still many more to go. My hope is that once LODs are finally activated in a future version of 0ADm Hyrule Conquest will finally run without performance issues even with hundreds of units killing each other on screen. In the next release of Hyrule Conquest however, you will be able to switch between model details manually in the options menu to adjust for your PC's specs. Soon the Low Poly Patch as a separate download will no longer be necessary, as it can be easily activated in the options menu.

Napalm_Knight - - 192 comments

Low LOD goat looking like me when I'm sick.

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