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Packaging your finished map is the final step in the map making process, it's important to get this stage right.

Check list

Before you begin to package your map check the following.

  • You've added Surface sounds to your map,if not see Surface sounds
  • You've prepared a levelshot and it's been resized to a value which is a power of 2, 32,64,128,256,512,1024,2048, etc. For more information see Creating a levelshot
  • You've created a bot navigation file (.aas). For more information about adding bots see Adding bots to your map
  • All images are resized correctly

The folders

Personally I always start with clean folder somewhere on my system. In this folder I create the following sub-folders.



Generally sky textures go in this folder, if not used you may omit this folder.

Some mappers put the sky textures in the textures folder, but it doesn't have any benefit at all.


The image that is displayed while your map is loading. This should have been resized to be 1024x1024 or 2048x2048 and be in .tga or .jpg format.

For more information about creating a levelshot see Creating a levelshot


The maps folder should contain the following objects


Of these the .bsp and .tga files are the most important.


Your compiled map file.


The bot navigation file, for more information about making bot files see Adding bots to your map


The rad file is generated when you've compiled your map with the -radbump switch


The mini-map. You can include the standard generated mini-map or with a little effort create a small work of art. For more information about creating stylish minimaps, see Packaging:Minimap


The most common mistake when first packing your map is to forget to include the textures/shaders for the models you've added. If you've not used models in your map you can ignore this section.

Models, like those you may have downloaded from blackrayne generally go in the mapobjects sub-folder, you should confirm this by looking at your own mapping configuration. You should include all textures and any licence information, the model maker will sometimes ask you credit his work by including his README file.

Do not distribute the actual models : md3, qc, ase models can be removed before packing your map.

The models are "baked" into your map by the compiler, so the actual models are not needed and take a lot of space when distributed in your map.


The arena file describes your map to the menu system, declares which game modes your map supports and contains a short description of your map which is displayed in the ui.

An example arena file might take the form.

  map "ut4_yourmapname"
  longname "The bestest map that ever lived"
  type "ut_ffa ut_team ut_survivor ut_follow ut_cah ut_ctf ut_bomb"

You should remove any game modes which your map doesn't support. Game types are

ut_jump - please note : This is gametype 9 (jump mode) and not currently supported.

You need to save the file with the .arena extension


Sound effects and music for your map should be placed in your maps folder inside the sound folder.


Your map texture folder should be copied to the textures folder. Check and then recheck your image files.

  • Remove any original artwork (photoshop and gimp files)
  • Check the images sizes, power of 2 only sizes should be used, this includes levelshots
  • Convert any non-transparent .tga (targa) files to .jpg - this can save an enormous amount of space


If your map includes video - place in this folder. Video files for q3 games use the .roq format at the maximum of 256x256 resolution. Videos can be used in shader stages in a similar way to images.

The readme with credits

In the course of building your map you will have used textures or models from a 3rd party source. You should at least credit the hard work of those people in some way.

Download and complete the following template to include as readme.txt in the root folder of your map


Title                   : 
Map Filename            : 
Filename                : 
Release Date            : 
Author(s)               : 
Email Address           :  
Description             : 
Additional Credits to   : id Software: For making Q3

Silicon Ice Development/Frozen Sand LLC: For making Urban Terror and so strongly supporting the UT community.

Artwork                 : 
Testers and other       : 
Contributors            : 

Info about the Author   : 
Installation            :  
* PK3 File Information *

Map(.bsp) Name          : 
New Textures            : 
New Sounds              : 
New Music Track         :  

* Play Information *

Bot Support             : 
Deathmatch              : 
Last Man Standing       : 
Follow The Leader       : 
Team Survivor           : 
Capture The Flag        : 
Capture and Hold        : 
Bomb                    : 
Jump mode               : 

* Construction *

Base                    : 
Editor(s) used          : 
Other Progs used        : 
Build Time              : 
Build Machine           : 
Compile machine         : 
Final Compile time      : 

* Map/Creative Notes *

* Copyright / Permissions *

Authors MAY NOT use this level as a base to build additional
levels, and the geometry CANNOT be changed in any way. If you
wish to recreate this level for another game or mod, please
inform me be e-mail, just so I know it's out there in other
forms, and I might even help. Please retain this text file if you do.

This .pk3 may be distributed over the Internet and/or BBS
systems(like these exist anymore) as long as the ORIGINAL(this)
text file is included in the .zip file.

You may NOT distribute this map/.pk3/.bsp file commercially
without my expressed WRITTEN permission. If you wish to include
this in a compilation of some form, have your people contact my
people and they'll talk, or just send me an e-mail and we'll talk.

Pages in category ‘Packaging’

The following 2 pages are in this category, out of 2 total.