This tutorial will show you how to make your own console background and loading images for your mod.
You will need:
- Valve's modified version of ID Software's Qlumpy.exe executable (available in the Half-Life SDK)
- A competent image editing program such as Photoshop, GIMP, or Paint.NET
- A text editor such as Notepad
Just a few notes:
- The console background and loading image are stored in a wad file in the mod's root directory called cached.wad.
- I would advise that you make your own mod before you do this. Don't worry, making a new mod will only take about 30 seconds, and only requires the creation of 1 file. For more on this, go here.
- If you don't want to bother with that, then at least back up your current cached.wad file in your valve directory before changing it. You never know that may happen.
Making the images
First of all, were going to have to make the images themselves.
- Fire up your image editor. Create a new image by going to File -> New.
- You should now specify the dimensions for the new image. For the purposes of this tutorial, make the dimensions 320 x 200 pixels. You may choose to experiment with this size later.
- Make it! Draw something, import an image relevant to your mod, whatever.
- NOTE: It would be illogical to make a console background that makes the text of the console unreadable. So, when designing the console background, be sure to keep in mind the colour of the console text.
- When your finished, save your image as conback.bmp (note: the image must be a normal 8-bit 256 colour bitmap). You can actually name it whatever you want, but I'll use this for this tutorial.
- Repeat steps 1-3 for the Loading image, and save it as loadback.bmp. Again, make sure it is saved as an appropriate bitmap.
Now that we have our images, we will compile them both into the cached.wad file using the Qlumpy.exe tool. But, a few things need to be taken care of:
- Make a new temporary folder on your hard drive. Something like c:\temp\qlumpy\ will work best and cause you less hassles later on.
- Take qlumpy.exe out of the SDK (look in the Texture Wad Tools folder) and put it in the temp directory you just made. Also, put both your images in there.
Compiling your Cached.wad
OK, Now were ready to compile your cached.wad file.
1. Fire up Notepad. Enter the following lines exactly as they appear:
conback qpic 0 0 320 200
loading qpic 0 0 320 200
NOTE: You will need to replace the file paths above with the actual path to the images on your hard drive. If you have been using the exact paths and names I have been using in this tutorial, then you wont need to change anything.
Advanced users note: If you are experimenting with different image sizes, then I suggest you modify the last two numbers in the
qpic lines to reflect the dimensions of your two images.
2. Save the file in your temporary directory (c:\temp\qlumpy in this tutorial) as console.ls
NOTE: the extension you should save under must be .ls, NOT .txt, as Notepad will save by default. Make sure you check after you have saved this file that the extension is correct before proceeding. To do this, make sure Windows is not hiding your file extensions.
3. In Notepad, go to File -> New. This time, enter the following:
4. Save the file in your temporary directory as consolewad.bat
NOTE: As above, make sure the extension is .bat, and not .txt. Also, you can actually name this file anything you want.
Now all that remains is to simply double-click on consolewad.bat
, and a dos window should appear, think about all of this and eventually spit out a cached.wad
All you need to do is put this cached.wad
file in your mod's root directory, and the changes should take effect.