Master material Perf survey
So I'm creating a master material for artists to create instances from and a question arises. When you use static switches to turn on or off things like specular, normal, emissive and all that jazz you basically end up creating multiple materials (one for each configuration of all the static switches) that get compiled at runtime. This kind of detracts from one of the points of having a master material (yes I know there are other reasons to have one but lets stick to just this one for now).
The alternative is to have a default texture plugged into each of those channels that basically gives them zero effect until the artist plugs in their own texture. Now you can have just one default texture (a 16x16 white block in my case), but because each of those is a parameter Unreal treats them as separate textures.
So my question is this: Is it better to have more materials or more (albeit small) textures in your scene?
I've done some profiling with stat memory and PIX on the xbox and the difference is not huge, but I've only got a few test meshes in my scene and before I take the time to try and build a whole scene to profile I wanted to get a few opinions and see if anyone can shed some light on the situation.