Maplist Thumbnails

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A quicklist thumb (100%)

The Maplist is a user-friendly mode for the server browser, available in the Orange Box, which emphasizes key information like the map name and gametype. It achieves this partly by providing a thumbnail image of each map, and this article will show you how to create one of your own.

Creating a thumbnail

Three files are needed for a thumbnail to appear:

  1. menu_thumb_<map name>.vtf
  2. menu_thumb_<map name>.vmt
  3. <map name>.res
Note:Packing these into your map will not work. You must instead distribute each one alongside it (and hope that they stay together). The .res will tell the server to upload the thumbnail files to clients along with the map.

Texture

For an in-depth guide to creating a VTF file, see Creating a Material.

Take a screenshot of your map that is easily recognizable and will scale down well. Then:

  1. Resize/crop the image so that it fits into a 128x96 rectangle.
  2. Position the image along the top of a 128x128 image. Don't resize it.
  3. Enable the "No Mipmap" and "No Level of Detail" options.
  4. Save as <game>\materials\vgui\maps\menu_thumb_<map name>.vtf.

Material

For an in-depth guide to creating a VMT file, see Creating a Material.

Paste this:

UnlitGeneric
{
	$basetexture	"vgui\maps\menu_thumb_<map name>"
	$translucent	1
	$ignorez	1
	$vertexcolor	1
}

To do: Are the last three parameters really required?

Remember to replace <map name> in $basetexture with your map's actual name. Don't include a file extension anywhere. Save as <game>\materials\vgui\maps\menu_thumb_<map name>.vmt.

Resource list

Paste this:

Resources
{ 
	materials/vgui/maps menu_thumb_<map name>.vmt	file
	materials/vgui/maps menu_thumb_<map name>.vtf	file 
}

Once again, replace <map name> with your map's actual name. Save as <game>\maps\<map name>.res.

Creating a default thumbnail

There are actually two default thumbnails: one for maps that need to be downloaded and one for maps already on the player's computer. They are:

  • materials\vgui\maps\menu_thumb_default
  • materials\vgui\maps\menu_thumb_default_download

They are otherwise identical to any other maplist thumbnail.

Warning: These files are not inherited from the engine. Mods need to have their own (including the .vmt) or the dreaded purple checkerboard will be drawn instead.

See also