Chunk loading is actually removing objects that can’t be observed for interacted with. Dynamic level of detail (LoD) is reducing the amount of detail when far away from objects. Many modern games in the industry implement both of these features for large maps. For example in Skyrim, the outside map is unloaded when the player enters a cave. World of Warcraft and Rift have more seamless transitions with world ‘instances’, a form of chunk loading. Roblox’s streaming enabled setting could be seen as a chunk loader with each chunk being a single part.
As for the LoD, Roblox, is currently working on this. Looking at the roadmap, I see that texture LoD is already implemented and that mesh LoD is on-track for this quarter.
The problem is that chunk loading and LoD on models rather than individual parts/textures/meshes would require information from the developer to avoid messing up their game. Making LoD or chunk loader is a pretty complex process and if not properly tested with an eye on the actual results (not performing per-optimizations and over-optimizations) then it could easily be less performant. If you really want to go down this path, “discrete level of detail” is probably what you are looking for. Other methods would be difficult or impossible to implement in Roblox.
A discrete LoD system needs to:
- determine when a player enters within a range
- add detail to a LoD object
- remove detail from a LoD object
All of these things can be implemented and tested separately. To determine when a player enters a range, there are a couple good examples here, and others on this forum: Proximity-based interaction - Help determining performant practice These ranges would need to be linked to a discrete level of detail.
To add/remove details from a LoD object you will need some way to keep track of how much detail is currently being displayed and determine what needs to be added/removed to achieve the desired level of detail. This could be done by making a table that maps models with a LoD tag on them to a table containing this information.