Four way shadow

Hi, I was wondering if anyone had any ideas on how to get a four way shadow like this:

My two ideas would be to
a) use a transparent render of the shadow and place it below the player
b) use four lights and shadow renders…

I do not like either of these, because 1 requires tonnes of images since I have many animations, and the other seems like it might be somewhat of a performance problem.

The shadows would only be displayed on a flat surface, no going up walls. They do not need a real source, and would never need to change in any way beyond on/off.

I’m currently using the first idea with very simple “fat circle” shadows. I don’t like them but am resigned to the idea since I can’t think of a way to do nice shadows as in the picture.

This would work, but yeah it can get you pretty bad perfs. You’d have to render each players 5 times.

If you want accurate shadows I can’t see a way around it though.

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Ah well, thanks anyway