Ashley Thanks for the considered reply. I think I do appreciate the limitations here (in my past life I developed ASICs for modern video game hardware, PC and console. So, yes, more on the hardware side, but I understand GPU/CPU tradeoffs for performance.) So, even though we have to upload vertices every frame and we can't use VS for things like rotation or deformation/animation, a good experience does still seem possible offloading that work to the CPU and requiring per frame vertices upload.
I think it would still be interesting for a range of games on a range of platforms.
Developers would need to focus on low poly models in general and especially for the lower end devices, however in C3 we do develop games that focus on different platforms (e.g. some focus on PC/Console, some focus on higher end mobile, some across the full range, down to low end mobile.) So at least for the PC/console platform it should be possible to have a number of models. The fighter model is in the 900 poly range, I've seen other low poly models in the hundreds range which look pretty good.
Without any optimizations, I've tested some 3DObject models on my iMac and get 100k+ polygons at 60fps, on my $120 Raspberry Pi 400 I get around 10k+ polygons.
As with 3DShape, it would need to be used in moderation. For example there have been a number of GTA2 examples done using 3DShape for buildings and playing with the coming vanishing point and just a low poly car or two would look pretty nice in my opinion. Thanks for considering the request.