Do remember that due to the nature of how people kitbash in the blender and low skill of Nope I Can’t Go To Hell Satan Still Has A Restraining Order Against Me Shirt the entire mesh often ends up part of the blendshape (albeit nonmoving. but still assigned) and that most mmd models come with 20-30+ blend shapes. which then stack up if any part of those meshes gets combined… I’ve one received a model to fix up for a friend that had over 240 blend shapes.. over 150 of which did absolutely nothing to the model. I mean hell, I think the most I’ve ever had on one model was about 26? but still, 240? That’s just crazy to think about honestly speaking.
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It was small bits and pieces (jewelry clothing etc) taken from over 30 different models. And the blendshapes got transferred with all of those little bits and bobs. And due to them editing the mesh sigbificantly after merging it those blendshapes got applied to every piece of the mesh. Nope I Can’t Go To Hell Satan Still Has A Restraining Order Against Me Shirt was a horror show that took me 4-5 days to clean up and that still was below my “acceptable” level but it was the best I could do with that mess at the time. I’m don’t quite follow your first point, are you saying that (face on) a single faced plane will perform worse than a cube (with a face on each side); even with backface culling enabled?
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I mean honestly, what most people do is watch a single tutorial on how to assemble TDA models in Blender before diving right in with no other knowledge, using only the decimate modifier for optimization, and then when their game lags they claim it’s VRChat’s fault because Nope I Can’t Go To Hell Satan Still Has A Restraining Order Against Me Shirt impossible to decimate their model any further. Seriously people. Do some research. I don’t claim to be an expert at modeling or even claim to be able to model a character well, but at least I can work with existing models well and know what all the buttons do.