I am intermediate at blender and I am currently working on a trireme for Unity, so it must be as low poly as possible(I plan to use it for an RTS, so many of these will be displayed at the same time, just reiterating how important low poly is for me). The ship needs 180 oars, so they are big vertex consumers. I modelled a basic oar and I wanted to smooth it by making a subdivided model and then baking the normal. I have baked normal maps before but those were high poly sculpted models onto low poly models. The normal map seems fine but the result seems like there is no normal map. The uvs are correctly placed over the normal map.
My question is if I baked incorrectly the object or it is not possible to bake subdivided models onto unsubdivided? If it is the latter, what suggestions do you have to achieve a smoother look without having to add any vertices?