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ET Mapping Tutorial

Lesson 37


Making a PK3 file
Making a PK3 file
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Making a PK3 file [Top]
Wow, just 37 lessons later and the survivors among you are ready to make your first PK3 file, so you can publish your map to the gaming community.

This is probably a good time to mention that not everyone will love or appreciate the couple of hundred hours of effort you put in.  Despite being generally well received, I've had "This map is crap" from somebody or other for all of the maps I've made.  You can't please everyone all of the time, so develop a thick skin now...

Your PK3 must contain all of the material that doesn't come as standard with the regular ET installation.

If you miss any components, either your map won't load/run properly, or the players will see the ugly yellow/black "missing texture" squares.

Run Pakscape (link is in lesson 10), click File/New

Create these folders (substitute tutorial for your map name):

  • levelshots
  • maps
  • maps/tutorial
  • scripts
  • sound
  • sound/maps
  • sound/scripts
  • textures
  • textures/tutorial

Now we need to import all the required files into the appropriate pakscape folders.  Be sure that you have removed any testing aids you added in the script, at least by commenting them out (eg, you may have shortened the respawn time, lengthed the map time or included "wm_announces" to tell you when things are happening).

Click on levelshots and then right-click in the right-hand pane, and select object/import file.  Navigate to etmain/levelshots and select tutorial.tga and tutorial_cc.tga and click Open to import them.

Click on maps and import from etmain/maps these files: tutorial.bsp, tutorial.objdata, tutorial.script and tutorial_tracemap.tga.

Then right-click again in the same pane and select object/import directory and select the etmain/maps/tutorial folder to import it and its contents (a load of files named lm_0000.tga, lm_0001.tga, etc).  The number of files will depend on the size/shape of your map.

Click on scripts and import from etmain/scripts these files: tutorial.arena, tutorial.shader and tutorial_levelshots.shader.

Click on sound/maps and import etmain/sound/maps/tutorial.sps.

Click on sound/scripts and import etmain/sound/scripts/tutorial.sounds.

Click on textures/tutorial and import any bespoke textures files from the etmain/textures/tutorial folder.

If you are using a skybox, import the skybox folder and its contents also into the textures/tutorial pakscape folder.

Create a readme.txt file in Wordpad or similar, copying the style of an existing one from another pk3.  Then import it into pakscape at the root level.

Here's an image of the glider.pk3 contents as an example of how yours might look.  There are additional folders than those we've covered, as there are components included that have not been covered in the tutorial thus far.  I had allied and axis specific bespoke sounds in glider, hence the presence of allied and axis folders within the glider folder.

Save the file - I use a file naming convention that includes the map version.  This helps people identify when new versions have come out, and also allows players to play different versions on different servers without perpetually having to download one version over the top of another.

So I would suggest calling version 1 either tutorial1.pk3 or tutorial_100.pk3 (I use v1.0.0 syntax for version naming).

You should now test the PK3 in your etmain folder.  If you see horrible random shadows all over the place, it generally means you haven't properly included the etmain/maps/tutorial tga files contents.

Be sure to remove the pk3 from etmain before any Radiant reworking - if you forget, when you attempt to test your changes ET will instead still load the old pk3 version.

If you can, test your PK3 on a different computer, preferably one with a vanilla installation of ET, to highlight any omissions you may have made.

Your map is now publishable.  The lessons to follow are optional, and rather more complicated, and only needed if you want to get on to more sophisticated elements such as tanks and fancy terrain merging shaders etc.

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