L4D AddonInfo Authoring

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In Left 4 Dead Left 4 Dead and Left 4 Dead 2 Left 4 Dead 2, a addoninfo.txt provides metadata for an addon, which is used by both the addons menu and the server browser. Its good practice to prepare a basic addoninfo.txt for your addons as otherwise it leads to bugs; addons with no metadata can't appear in the addons menu.

Note.png Note: In Left 4 Dead 2 when playing online, addons subscribed to the Steam Workshop takes metadata from the subscribed page, overriding the addoninfo.txt file.
Warning.png Warning: In Left 4 Dead, addons don't reload until you relaunch the game.

Keys

Any text that looks like this means that its either obsolete, or deprecated.

Metadata

These keys setup the general, but still important metadata of mods. Usually they're used for the addons menu.

Key Description
addonTitle Title of the addon. Mind that the default addon menu can't show long titles in full.
addonAuthor Name of the author.
addonURL0 Home page of addon with a download link. Used for server browsers, or joining a lobby without the necessities downloaded. (e.g. Mutations)
addonDescription Description of addon. In Left 4 Dead 2, Steam Workshop addons have a character limit of 499, regardless of UI mods.
addonSteamAppID Steam App ID the addon is for. Only addoninstaller.exe uses this, but its still used for organization.
Tip.png Tip: App ID for Left 4 Dead is 500, while 550 for Left 4 Dead 2.
addonTagLine Supposedly a short summary of the add-on, but no visible functionality seems to be present.
addonVersion Version number of the addon; defaults to 1.0. Only addoninstaller.exe uses this.

Content Tagging

Add-ons can be given certain tags, which is displayed next to an add-on's name, and helps quickly describes an addon. In Left 4 Dead 2 however, tags are only visible when an addon is selected, but its possible to filter addons by tag.

These tags will also help forcing mods to work only on maps listed in the Mission File contained in the vpk.
Example, adding a coach texture mod to the same vpk and using addonContent_Survivor and addonContent_Skin in the addoninfo.txt will force the coach texture to load only on the maps listed in the missionfile.

Bug.png Bug: The Collision Mesh for the entire duration of the game's runtime is decided by which will be loaded first.

If you load a map with a custom prop and custom collision model, the custom one will be used on all maps until the game is restarted. If you load the original first, the original will be used on every map, including yours that would have a custom collision.

This was tested on the propane tank model.


The add-on menu has limits to tags, but its different in each game:

  • Left 4 Dead - Appends '..' to the addon's tags. Needs 4+ tags in Left 4 Dead's default menu UI before this happens.
  • Left 4 Dead 2 - Cuts off the tag's names. The limit before it happens is 30 characters for the default menu UI.
Key Left 4 Dead Left 4 Dead's effects Left 4 Dead 2 Left 4 Dead 2's effects
addonContent_Campaign Adds the Campaign tag. Loads all assets within the addon only for the maps in the campaign's mission file; adds the Campaigns tag.
addonContent_Map If addonContent_Campaign isn't used, adds the Maps tag. If addonContent_Campaign isn't used, adds the Campaigns tag.
addonContent_Survivor Adds the Survivor Models tag. Adds the Survivors tag.
addonContent_Skin Adds the Skins tag. Adds the Skins tag. Using a single string instead is possible. To do: What does that do?
addonContent_BossInfected Adds the Boss Models tag. Adds the Infected tag.
addonContent_CommonInfected Adds the Common Models tag. Adds the Infected tag.
addonContent_Music Adds the Music tag. Adds the Sounds tag.
addonContent_Sound Adds the Sounds tag. Adds the Sounds tag.
addonContent_Prop Adds the Prop Models tag. Adds the Items tag.
addonContent_Weapon Adds the Weapon Models tag. Adds the Weapons tag.
addonContent_Script Adds the Scripts tag. Adds the Scripts tag.

Doesn't exist

These keys are found in the example addoninfo.txt from the Deadline example campaign, but does nothing when used.

Key Description
addonTagline A "wrap-up short description". How this was going to be implemented is unknown.
addonAuthorSteamID Supposed to setup a link that goes to the author's page.
addonSteamGroupName Supposed to setup a link that goes to a Steam Group's page.
addonContent_Survival, addonContent_Versus, addonContent_Scavenge (only in Left 4 Dead 2) Likely meant for maps.
addonContent_Prefab Prefabs refer to Hammer VMF prefabs. This doesn't alter the menu tags in anyway.
addonContent_Spray This doesn't alter the menu tags in anyway.
addonContent_BackgroundMovie 'BackgroundMovie' likely refers to the menu video.
Content_Weapon Supposedly for when the addon "provides a new weapon, i.e. guns, explosives, booby traps, hot tar, etc.". No such modding support exists.
Content_WeaponModel 'WeaponModel' points to mods that changes the looks of weapons.
addonDescription_XX Extra localization key variants for addon descriptions. The last two characters are the first two characters of the language (e.g. addonDescription_FR for French).
  • _DA - Danish
  • _NL - Dutch
  • _FI - Finnish
  • _FR - French
  • _DE - German
  • _IT - Italian
  • _JA - Japanese
  • _KO - Korean
  • _NO - Norwegian
  • _PL - Portuguese
  • _RU - Russian
  • _ZH - Chinese
  • _ES - Spanish
  • _SV - Sweden

File Samples

Below are the extensively-documented addoninfo.txt from the sample "Dead Line" campaign, which is the source of all keys mentioned in this page.

Downloads to the sample campaigns are below:

Dead Line Left 4 Dead 
"AddonInfo"
{
	"addonSteamAppID"                  "500"
	"addonTitle"                       "Dead Line"
	"addonVersion"                     "1.0"
	"addonTagline"                     "Catch the last subway... out of hell."
	"addonAuthor"                      "Valve"
	"addonAuthorSteamID"               "MikeDurand"
	"addonSteamGroupName"              "deadlineaddon"
	"addonURL0"                        "http://media.steampowered.com/apps/513/deadline.html"

	"addonContent_Campaign"            "1"
	"addonContent_Survival"            "0"
	"addonContent_Scavenge"            "0"
	"addonContent_Versus"              "0"
	"addonContent_Map"                 "0"

	"addonContent_Survivor"            "0"
	"addonContent_Skin"                "0"

	"addonContent_BossInfected"        "0"
	"addonContent_CommonInfected"      "0"
	"addonContent_Music"               "0"
	"addonContent_Sound"               "0"
	"addonContent_Prop"                "0"
	"addonContent_Prefab"              "0"
	"addonContent_Spray"               "0"
	"addonContent_Script"              "0"
	"addonContent_BackgroundMovie"     "0"

	"Content_Weapon"                   "0"
	"Content_WeaponModel"              "0"

	"addonDescription"                 "Survivors must escape on a subway train in this short tutorial example campaign. Get source files and tools for creating your own campaigns by downloading the Left 4 Dead 2 Authoring tools SDK, which is available under the 'Tools' tab in Steam."
	"addonDescription_DA"              "Overlevende skal undslippe et S-tog i denne korte tutorial eksempel kampagne. Få kildefiler og værktøjer til at skabe dine egne kampagner ved at downloade Left 4 Dead 2 Authoring værktøjer SDK, som er tilgængelig under 'Funktioner' fanen i Steam."
	"addonDescription_NL"              "Overlevenden moet ontsnappen op een metro in deze korte handleiding voorbeeld campagne. Krijg bronbestanden en tools voor het maken van uw eigen campagnes door het downloaden van de Left 4 Dead 2 Authoring gereedschappen SDK, die beschikbaar is op het tabblad 'Extra' in Steam."
	"addonDescription_FI"              "Survivors on pelastautua metro tässä lyhyessä harjoitusesimerkit kampanja. Hanki lähdetiedostot ja työkalut luoda omia kampanjoita lataamalla Left 4 Dead 2 Authoring Tools SDK, joka on käytettävissä Työkalut-välilehti Steam."
	"addonDescription_FR"              "Les survivants doivent s'échapper en métro dans cette carte du tutoriel. Obtenez les fichiers et les outils pour créer vos propres cartes en chargeant les outils de création SDK Left 4 Dead 2 qui sont disponibles sous l'onglet 'Outils' sur Steam."
	"addonDescription_DE"              "Survivors muss auf einer U-Bahn in diesem kurzen Tutorial beispielsweise Kampagne entkommen. Holen Sie sich die Quelldateien und Werkzeuge für die Erstellung eigener Kampagnen, indem Sie die Left 4 Dead 2 Authoring Tools SDK, welches unter der Registerkarte 'Tools' in Steam."
	"addonDescription_IT"              "I sopravvissuti devono sfuggire su un treno della metropolitana in questa breve campagna esempio tutorial. Ottenere file di origine e di strumenti per la creazione di campagne scaricando il Left 4 Dead 2 Authoring Tools SDK, che è disponibile sotto la scheda 'Strumenti' nel vapore."
	"addonDescription_JA"              "生存者はこの短いチュートリアルの例のキャンペーンの地下鉄電車の中でエスケープする必要があります。スチームで[ツール]タブの下で利用可能ですレフト4デッドオーサリングツールのSDKをダウンロードすることにより、独自のキャンペーンを作成するためのソースファイルやツールを入手してください。"
	"addonDescription_KO"              "생존자들은이 짧은 튜토리얼 예제 캠페인 지하철에서 탈출해야합니다. 증기의 '도구'탭에 따라 사용할 수 있습니다 레프트 4 데드 저작 도구 SDK를 다운로드하여 자신의 캠페인을 만들기위한 소스 파일과 도구를 얻을."
	"addonDescription_NO"              "Overlevende må rømme på et tog i denne korte opplæringen eksempel kampanjen. Få kildefilene og verktøy for å lage dine egne kampanjer ved å laste ned Left 4 Dead 2 Authoring verktøy SDK, som er tilgjengelig under 'Verktøy'-fanen i Steam."
	"addonDescription_PL"              "Ocaleni muszą uciekać na pociąg metra w tej krótkiej kampanii przykład samouczka. Pobierz pliki źródłowe i narzędzia do tworzenia własnych kampanii pobierając Left 4 Dead 2 Authoring narzędzi SDK, który jest dostępny w zakładce 'Narzędzia' w Steam."
	"addonDescription_PT"              "Sobreviventes deve escapar em um trem do metrô nesta campanha exemplo curto tutorial. Obter arquivos de origem e ferramentas para criar suas próprias campanhas baixando o Left 4 Dead 2 Authoring ferramentas SDK, que está disponível na aba 'Ferramentas' no Steam."
	"addonDescription_RU"              "Выжившие должны бежать на поезд метро, ​​в этой короткой кампании пример урока. Получить исходные файлы и инструменты для создания собственных кампаний, загрузив Left 4 Dead 2 Authoring инструментов SDK, который доступен на вкладке 'Инструменты' в Steam."
	"addonDescription_ZH"              "在这个简短的示范性的战役中,生还者必须逃出地铁列车。通过下载求生之路2的专属工具(Left 4 Dead 2 Authoring tools SDK)----此SDK可以在steam平台的库中的工具一栏找到----来获取起源引擎的文件和工具以创建属于您自己的战役。"
	"addonDescription_ES"              "Los sobrevivientes deben escapar en un tren subterráneo en esta corta campaña de ejemplo del tutorial. Obtenga los archivos de origen y las herramientas para crear sus propias campañas por descargar el Left 4 Dead 2 Authoring herramientas SDK, que está disponible en la pestaña 'Herramientas' en Steam."
	"addonDescription_SV"              "Överlevande måste fly på ett tunnelbanetåg i denna korta handledning exempel kampanjen. Få källfiler och verktyg för att skapa dina egna kampanjer genom att ladda ner Left 4 Dead 2 Authoring Tools SDK, som är tillgänglig under 'Verktyg' fliken i Steam."
}
Dead Line 2 Left 4 Dead 2 
"AddonInfo"
{
	"addonSteamAppID"                  "550"
	"addonTitle"                       "Dead Line 2"
	"addonVersion"                     "1.0"
	"addonTagline"                     "Catch the last subway... out of hell... Again!"
	"addonAuthor"                      "Valve"
	"addonAuthorSteamID"               "YasserMalaika"
	"addonSteamGroupName"              "deadlineaddon"
	"addonURL0"                        "http://media.steampowered.com/apps/513/deadline2.html"

	"addonContent_Campaign"            "1"
	"addonContent_Survival"            "0"
	"addonContent_Scavenge"            "0"
	"addonContent_Versus"              "0"
	"addonContent_Map"                 "0"

	"addonContent_Survivor"            "0"
	"addonContent_Skin"                "0"

	"addonContent_BossInfected"        "0"
	"addonContent_CommonInfected"      "0"
	"addonContent_Music"               "0"
	"addonContent_Sound"               "0"
	"addonContent_Prop"                "0"
	"addonContent_Prefab"              "0"
	"addonContent_Spray"               "0"
	"addonContent_Script"              "0"
	"addonContent_BackgroundMovie"     "0"

	"Content_Weapon"                   "0"
	"Content_WeaponModel"              "0"

	"addonDescription"                 "Survivors must escape on a subway train in this short tutorial example campaign. Get source files and tools for creating your own campaigns by downloading the Left 4 Dead 2 Authoring tools SDK, which is available under the 'Tools' tab in Steam."
	"addonDescription_DA"              "Overlevende skal undslippe et S-tog i denne korte tutorial eksempel kampagne. Få kildefiler og værktøjer til at skabe dine egne kampagner ved at downloade Left 4 Dead 2 Authoring værktøjer SDK, som er tilgængelig under 'Funktioner' fanen i Steam."
	"addonDescription_NL"              "Overlevenden moet ontsnappen op een metro in deze korte handleiding voorbeeld campagne. Krijg bronbestanden en tools voor het maken van uw eigen campagnes door het downloaden van de Left 4 Dead 2 Authoring gereedschappen SDK, die beschikbaar is op het tabblad 'Extra' in Steam."
	"addonDescription_FI"              "Survivors on pelastautua metro tässä lyhyessä harjoitusesimerkit kampanja. Hanki lähdetiedostot ja työkalut luoda omia kampanjoita lataamalla Left 4 Dead 2 Authoring Tools SDK, joka on käytettävissä Työkalut-välilehti Steam."
	"addonDescription_FR"              "Les survivants doivent s'échapper en métro dans cette carte du tutoriel. Obtenez les fichiers et les outils pour créer vos propres cartes en chargeant les outils de création SDK Left 4 Dead 2 qui sont disponibles sous l'onglet 'Outils' sur Steam."
	"addonDescription_DE"              "Survivors muss auf einer U-Bahn in diesem kurzen Tutorial beispielsweise Kampagne entkommen. Holen Sie sich die Quelldateien und Werkzeuge für die Erstellung eigener Kampagnen, indem Sie die Left 4 Dead 2 Authoring Tools SDK, welches unter der Registerkarte 'Tools' in Steam."
	"addonDescription_IT"              "I sopravvissuti devono sfuggire su un treno della metropolitana in questa breve campagna esempio tutorial. Ottenere file di origine e di strumenti per la creazione di campagne scaricando il Left 4 Dead 2 Authoring Tools SDK, che è disponibile sotto la scheda 'Strumenti' nel vapore."
	"addonDescription_JA"              "生存者はこの短いチュートリアルの例のキャンペーンの地下鉄電車の中でエスケープする必要があります。スチームで[ツール]タブの下で利用可能ですレフト4デッド2オーサリングツールのSDKをダウンロードすることにより、独自のキャンペーンを作成するためのソースファイルやツールを入手してください。"
	"addonDescription_KO"              "생존자들은이 짧은 튜토리얼 예제 캠페인 지하철에서 탈출해야합니다. 증기의 '도구'탭에 따라 사용할 수 있습니다 레프트 4 데드 2 제작 도구 SDK를 다운로드하여 자신의 캠페인을 만들기위한 소스 파일과 도구를 얻을."
	"addonDescription_NO"              "Overlevende må rømme på et tog i denne korte opplæringen eksempel kampanjen. Få kildefilene og verktøy for å lage dine egne kampanjer ved å laste ned Left 4 Dead 2 Authoring verktøy SDK, som er tilgjengelig under 'Verktøy'-fanen i Steam."
	"addonDescription_PL"              "Ocaleni muszą uciekać na pociąg metra w tej krótkiej kampanii przykład samouczka. Pobierz pliki źródłowe i narzędzia do tworzenia własnych kampanii pobierając Left 4 Dead 2 Authoring narzędzi SDK, który jest dostępny w zakładce 'Narzędzia' w Steam."
	"addonDescription_PT"              "Sobreviventes deve escapar em um trem do metrô nesta campanha exemplo curto tutorial. Obter arquivos de origem e ferramentas para criar suas próprias campanhas baixando o Left 4 Dead 2 Authoring ferramentas SDK, que está disponível na aba 'Ferramentas' no Steam."
	"addonDescription_RU"              "Выжившие должны бежать на поезд метро, ​​в этой короткой кампании пример урока. Получить исходные файлы и инструменты для создания собственных кампаний, загрузив Left 4 Dead 2 Authoring инструментов SDK, который доступен на вкладке 'Инструменты' в Steam."
	"addonDescription_ZH"              "在这个简短的示范性的战役中,生还者必须逃出地铁列车。通过下载求生之路2的专属工具(Left 4 Dead 2 Authoring tools SDK)----此SDK可以在steam平台的库中的工具一栏找到----来获取起源引擎的文件和工具以创建属于您自己的战役。"
	"addonDescription_ES"              "Los sobrevivientes deben escapar en un tren subterráneo en esta corta campaña de ejemplo del tutorial. Obtenga los archivos de origen y las herramientas para crear sus propias campañas por descargar el Left 4 Dead 2 Authoring herramientas SDK, que está disponible en la pestaña 'Herramientas' en Steam."
	"addonDescription_SV"              "Överlevande måste fly på ett tunnelbanetåg i denna korta handledning exempel kampanjen. Få källfiler och verktyg för att skapa dina egna kampanjer genom att ladda ner Left 4 Dead 2 Authoring Tools SDK, som är tillgänglig under 'Verktyg' fliken i Steam."
}

See also