Which is more resource heavy ? Alpha mapped plane or a polygon shape to achive the same effect ?

Which is worst for unitys frame rate for each platform - mobile,web and standalone. a few hundred tris of model ie 200 polys or so or alpha mapped plane for same static detail ? used as purely background with no player or physics interaction.


If it's a background, I think you could win making nice texture with alpha and reduce tris so that you can have more mesh details where the user is focusing.

Personally ( at least on what I build), I don't see much differences between web and standalone, because It make use of the same computer, so on them platforms, it's more about the minimum spec you require for your game to run.

On Mobile, it make a huge difference! reducing tris and drawcalls is a war, but sometimes ( and it very much depends on the scene itself) it's better to use more polygons than willing to use only alpha, cause you then have performances/rendering issues with shaders ( ipad and ipad2 rendering perfs difference is impressive), so the balance is to be found between:

  • number of tris,
  • number of drawcalls
  • number of materials
  • shaders

and that for what's in the camera view ( correct me if I am wrong here).

Also look at atlasing to minimize the number of materials, if all your background stuff can be atlased into one material, it will improve perfs and allow you to inject more poly in your scene if you so wished.