Vertex animation LODs



Hey peeps, been a while since I posted here!

Has anyone ever given thought about making LODs for (soft) vertex animations? Specifically when I sim something in Houdini and bring it in unreal.

If I decimate the mesh before simming the animation will be different and not sync up. If I decimate the mesh after the sim the vertex numbers will change so I can’ t use the same position texture.

Has anyone done this succesfully?


Hello, from what I understand, vertex animation texture is points based.
Meaning that each points register one line of pixel in Y axis.
Example : you have 1024 points in your mesh, you will have 1024 lines.
Altering the mesh means you need a new texture.

So I guess you will need to swap the texture as you switch lod, I don’t know if its possible and I don’t know if its optimized since you will need to load severals textures. :thinking:


The only reliable way I can see is to create a new mesh and texture for each level and hard swap between. Then unload the unused one quick. That said, I don’t think you would gain much by doing so.


Altering the mesh doesn’t mean you need a new texture. You can use the same 1k texture if you reduce your mesh to 64 vertices. You are simply removing lines you don’t need, but the data is still valid for the other lines. Yes, you still have to use the 1k texture, but you can at least reduce the vertex count, better than nothing I guess ¯_(ツ)_/¯


It can most likely be done with custom mip maps of the texture and swapping meshes but… there are probably more low hanging fruit that can be optimized instead? :slight_smile:
Maybe an additional optimization step using custom mips could be to lower the framerate to save a little bit more memory, but that depends on if you can tell Unreal Engine to disregard MipLevels on texture load to skip mips above level X - not sure about that :thinking: