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Animated textures [Print this Article]
Posted by: NOmad
Date posted: May 14 2003
User Rating: 3 out of 5.0
Number of views: 6916
Number of comments: 1
Description: Making them, and getting them to work
Animated Textures in Half-Life

This is just a simple tutorial on how to make animated textures for Half-Life, and how to get them to work correctly. Itís not perfectly obvious how to work them, as I found out myself, so I decided to write this as to help others who may encounter the same problem.

First, youíll need a couple tools, for making the textures:
  • A graphics program, for making the frames of the animation. (Paint Shop Pro, Photoshop, Corel Draw/Photopaint, etc.)
    If you don't have a graphics program, or can't afford one at the moment, you can download a free trial version of Paint Shop Pro (the current version is 8) at the developer's website, Also, if you want to test if your animation runs properly, considor downlading Jasc's Animation Shop while you are at it.
  • Wally, or a similar program for making and editing the Half-Life package (.wad) files.
    You can snag yourself a free copy of wally at

You can use Wally to make the textures as well, but I wouldn't reccomend it; there just aren't as many features as what you may find in the "big" graphics programs. However, you can use Wally to "finalise" the texture, by adding decals/bullet holes/rivets/etc.

Anyway, back on topic. You are going to want to open up your graphics program, and make the seperate frames for the texture. Actually making the textures is beyond the scope of my tutorial, you'll have to learn that yourself, and/or take a class. Also, keep in mind that the demensions (Length and Height) must be divisible by 16.

Now that you've made the textures, I suggest you should make sure that they "run" well together, by testing them in an actual animation (i.e. an animated .gif image). When you finish, save the images into seperate .jpg files (or .bmp, .tga, .pcx, etc. Whatever floats your boat. Just be sure that Wally can open the file.).

Open the images in Wally. Now, either create a new .wad file, or open the halflife.wad WARNING! Do not overwite, or delete any of the existing images in this wad! If you did, it would be incredibly stupid. Plus, you'd have to reinstall Half-Life to get the textures back user posted image. I suggest creating your own wad. :-) Now, take the image that you wish to be first in the animation, and copy it, and then paste it into the wad. a dialogue box will pop up that looks like this:

user posted image

This is the most important step: In the little space where you put the name of the file, stick a "+0" in front of the name; let's say it the name of the animation will be "animat." So, the first frame will be named "+0_animat" (you don't have to use an underscore, but it helps to make it look better.)

This tells Wally, Hammer, and Half-Life that this is the first frame in an animation (or "zeroth" if you want to be picky about it user posted image) called "animat". From there, you do the same thing with each frame, except you add "+1" to the beginning of the second frame, and "+2" to the third, etc. Just remember that the word part (In this case "_animat") will be the same for all frames in the animation. Only the numbers change (Editors Note: There is a limit of 10 frames in any one animated texture, so the numbers can only go from +0 to +9).

When you get all the frames in the wad, save it, and you've got yourself an animated texture!

Well, thanks for reading my tutorial! I hope it helps and/or clears anything up for you. If you need any additional help, either E-mail me, or IM me if I'm online (). Good luck!

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User Comments Showing comments 1-1

Posted By: worldspawn on May 31 2004 at 21:10:53
Ah, thanks man! I finally got it working...

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