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$color independently scales the red, green and blue channels of an albedo. There are two ways of expressing a value:

$color "[ <normal> <normal> <normal> ]"
$color "{ <int> <int> <int> }"

The default is [1 1 1] or {255 255 255}.


Source uses a gamma correction of 2.2 by default. This must be taken into account when attempting to adjust the color of a texture to match some other color in a screenshot (for example, when trying to match the color of the bottom of a skybox material to the color of fog in the map). This is done by raising the initially calculated scale to the power of 2.2 before setting the $color value for your material. For example, if the sample (target) color in a screenshot is 120, the color of your texture at the point of interest is 240, and you want the two colors to match, you need to compute the albedo scale for your material as (120 / 240) ^ 2.2 = 0.218 (not 0.5, as one might expect).

Solid color

This parameter can be used without an albedo to display a solid color without the need of a texture (except a %tooltexture). As well as a small saving in performance and memory footprint, material_modify_control can be used to completely change the material's color at run-time if desired.

In this scenario, [1 1 1] is pure white.

Tip.png Tip: If the material is representing empty blackness, you will probably want to use the UnlitGeneric shader to prevent it from ever becoming grey.


A variant of $color named $color2 is specific for use with VertexLitGeneric. It works the same way as $color but for use on models.

$color2 "[ <normal> <normal> <normal> ]"
$color2 "{ <int> <int> <int> }"

Additional parameters

$blendTintByBaseAlpha <boolean>
Enables the use of an alpha mask to define areas to tint. Uses the mask of the Base Texture.
$blendTintColorOverBase <float>
Sets the amount to replace with solid color. A value of '0' will be full tint while a value of '1.00' will replace the albedo in the mask area with the color defined with $color2. Default value is '0'.