Xash3D is the powerful independent open-sourced 3D-engine, aimed for high compatibility with GoldSource engine formats (maps, models, textures, sounds, entities etc.), but with the intention to be an advanced platform for modmaking or game development. Technically it has been built from a scratch, using as totally original ideas, as some ideas from other 3D-engines. Xash3D overcomes obsolete GoldSource engine's limits and provides for you a new quality of gaming experience and modmaking capabilities, as extended map, model, texture & sound formats with higher limits, possibility to implement custom renderers with dynamic lighting and other modern features. Xash3D is the easy-to-use base to play existing Half-Life mods & create something new, impossible with GoldSource. Years of development & testing allowed to make from Xash3D a perfect mix of high compatibility with common GoldSource standards & high openness to creative modmaking ideas.

Post feature RSS Xash3D-compatible Half-Life mods with a custom game code

This article is about those singleplayer Half-Life mods which use non-standard game code. In most cases, their code is only Windows-compatible, so they will be suported only by Windows versions of original Xash3D or Xash3D FWGS. But sometimes you will have a chance to play them properly on another OS (if there is a ported version of the mod). Here is the guide about all Xash3D-compatible singleplayer mods, which use a custom game code.

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Currently Xash3D Engine by Unkle Mike (Windows version) supports almost every singleplayer Half-Life mod or map based on the standard game code. By the word "standard" is meaning a wide variety of mods released from early beginning of WON Half-Life era till the current Steam Half-Life, mods which used common Half-Life hl.dll & client.dll without applying any changes to them. Such mods are supported by Xash3D mostly without any problems, and you can find an information about them in this article.

But there are a lot of Half-Life mods which use a custom game code of any kind, intended for different things, from changing a HUD's color to adding new weapons, NPCs, monsters, game mechanics, visual effects etc. Most of them are supported by Xash3D also, except mods, based on very old HLSDK (before WON version and mods which bound to modern interfaces of current Steam Half-Life. Though in some cases Xash3D FWGS can help you with last ones.

But you should understand, that most of mods with a custom game code are only Windows-compatible. It means, if you try to launch them with any ported version ("fork") of Xash3D on another OS (like Android, Linux, Mac, iOS etc.), you will get different problems, from missing new weapons, NPCs, monsters, visual effects etc. to completely broken game mechanics. It's because the new code of such mods should be also ported on specific OS to make a mod work properly.

So, here is a guide about singleplayer Half-Life mods with non-standard game code, which were tested with Xash3D. All listed mods have a download link (if possible). You can play them with Xash3D, using common rules of mods' installing. Highly rated mods are marked with a bold font. Some mods have a compatibility tips, or an information about inner bugs of a mod (which show themselves not only with Xash3D, but with GoldSrc too). Some mods caused problems with performance on old builds of Xash3D because of engine-side mirrors (if "gl_allow_mirrors" cvar is set to "1"), but in latest builds this feature is removed, so you shouldn't get a trouble with it (still actual for previous builds though).



Compatible Half-Life themed mods (or which are using in a most part original Half-Life resources, weapons and characters):

Compatible mods & maps, based on Opposing Force's game code (some of them are released as separate mods for Half-Life, some are mappacks or maps which require Opposing Force to play):

Compatible mods, based on Spirit of Half-Life's code (SoHL is an advanced coding base for many mods, and there are ported versions of SoHL for another platforms, which can also be used to play corresponding mods not only on Windows, but on Linux, OS X & Android too, considering the required version of SoHL; "SoHL 1.2 compatible" means that mod is properly playable with origihal SoHL 1.2):

  • Spirit of Half-Life (there are a lot of different versions of SoHL, the most popular are original SoHL versions by Lauri Cheers - up to v1.2, plus subsequently updated versions v1.4, 1.5 & 1.8 and custom builds by Unkle Mike - v1.3, 1.6, 1.7, 1.9; SoHL itself contains just demo maps, which may be interesting for testing only)
  • Accidental Assassin (SoHL 1.2)
  • Big Scientists (SoHL 1.1 / SoHL 1.2 compatible)
  • Before (modified SoHL 1.8)
  • Black Death (modified SoHL 1.2; has minor problems with using of original SoHL 1.2)
  • Black Silla: Assault Demo (SoHL 1.2)
  • Blbej Den (SoHL 1.2)
  • Borderlands v0.4 (modified SoHL 1.1 / SoHL 1.2 compatible)
  • Chaos Theory unfinished (modified SoHL 1.3 / SoHL 1.2 compatible)
  • Christmas-Life (SoHL 1.8 / SoHL 1.2 compatible; initial mod works properly, but additional mappacks for this mod contain some maps with inner bugs)
  • City Crush v0.1 (SoHL 1.1 / SoHL 1.2 compatible)
  • Cold Experiment v1 (SoHL 1.0 / SoHL 1.2 compatible; to play it properly, you have to put into coldexv1 directory some files from SoHL: cl_dlls, dlls & sprites folders)
  • COLONY 42 Alpha (SoHL 1.5 / SoHL 1.2 compatible)
  • Crazy Crabs Demo 1 & 2 (SoHL 1.4 / SoHL 1.2 compatible; both demos are very unfinished & russian-only)
  • Dark Territory (modified SoHL 1.2 / SoHL 1.2 compatible; set fps_max to 60 to avoid an inner problem of the map tau_jungle_02 with a scripted sequence, otherwise you can get a gamebreaking bug)
  • Dead Sector v1.0a (SoHL 1.2)
  • Death Is Dead (SoHL 1.2, there is a fog-related inner bug at the first map, just save & reload to play normally)
  • Echoes v1.3 (modified SoHL 1.5; also try the cross-platform patch, it adds support for Linux & OS X and fixes some problems; Android port is also available)
  • Emergency (modified SoHL 1.2 / SoHL 1.2 compatible)
  • ESCAPE by DMC Interactive (modified SoHL 0.7.1 / SoHL 1.2 compatible)
  • ESCAPE 2 by DMC Interactive (modified SoHL 0.7.1 / SoHL 1.2 compatible)
  • Escape from Black Mesa Alpha (SoHL 1.2; the mod is unfinished, so you have to use cheats in the beginning to play)
  • ESCAPE: Trainingroom (SoHL 1.2)
  • Far Crab Demo v2 (SoHL 1.8 / SoHL 1.2 compatible)
  • Firefighter Demo v1.1 (SoHL 1.8 / SoHL 1.2 compatible)
  • Force of Evil (modified SoHL 0.5 / SoHL 1.2 compatible)
  • Friendship: Town of half-life.ru mappers v2.0 (modified SoHL 1.2 / SoHL 1.2 compatible)
  • Gunz and Science v1.2 (SoHL 1.2)
  • Half-Quake 3: Sunrise (SoHL 1.8)
  • Invasion 105 (SoHL 1.2)
  • Issues, aka Project Quantum Leap 2 (SoHL 1.2)
  • Malevolence (v1.3 uses standard Half-Life code, v1.4 uses modified SoHL 1.2)
  • Mission Impracticable 2 (SoHL 0.6.3; but custom code in fact wasn't used on maps, it's possible to play with standard HL code)
  • Nosferatu (SoHL 1.2; there is a problem with a scripted sequence at the beginning of the 5th map, in a ventilation, which causes a crash of Xash3D, so you can only use noclip to pass around this place; also there is an inner bug of the 4th map - saved games at this map will fail to load, so save your game at previous map - after a room with boxes and glass ceiling, and make a next save already at the 5th map)
  • Portrait of Freeman v1.1 (modified SoHL 0.6.3 / SoHL 1.2 compatible)
  • Preludes, aka T.S. Eliot - Preludes (SoHL 1.2; it's not a gameplay mod, it's a scripted "movie" sequence in 2 maps)
  • Prison v2.1 (modified SoHL 1.2 / SoHL 1.2 compatible; cross-platform version is also available)
  • Prize v1.1 (SoHL 1.2)
  • Project: M.L.P (modified SoHL 0.7.1 / SoHL 1.2 compatible)
  • Prototype 98 (SoHL 1.8 / SoHL 1.2 compatible; set fps_max to 60, otherwise you can get stuck in some places)
  • Radiation Alert: Episode 1 v1.1 (SoHL 1.2)
  • Reissues v1.1 (SoHL 1.5 / SoHL 1.2 compatible; latest builds of Xash3D got fixed Egypt mission problem)
  • Run from Hell (SoHL 1.1 / SoHL 1.2 compatible; there is the inner bug with underwater crates in the map firstmap9 - they can't be broken, so you should use noclip to pass through them)
  • Santa's Revenge (SoHL 1.2; set fps_max to 60 to avoid the inner problem of the last map with final scripted sequence, otherwise the mod can not be finished properly)
  • Santa's Revenge 2: Xmas Meltdown (SoHL 1.5)
  • Sector 6 (SoHL 1.2; at 6th map you should find a landmark for C4 and then go to a corner with a couch in the nearest room for level change)
  • Silent Zhildor Demo (SoHL 1.6)
  • Snark Planet Demo (modified SoHL 1.2 / SoHL 1.2 compatible)
  • Space Prisoner v1.1 (SoHL 1.0 / SoHL 1.2 compatible; after installing of the mod open liblist.gam or gameinfo.txt file in the mod's folder and correct the line gamedll "..\prison\dlls\spirit.dll" for gamedll "dlls\spirit.dll", otherwise you'll not be able to start a game; there is also a scripting error on a third map of the mod, so you'll be forced to use noclip to pass around bugged place)
  • Swiss Cheese Halloween 2002 (SoHL 0.7.1 / SoHL 1.2 compatible; Android port is also available; the mod has few inner problems)
  • Tactical Espionage Action v1.1 (SoHL 1.8; there's a small problem with few missing game titles, which are not really important for gameplay)
  • Terrorist Attack 2, aka Terrorist attack 1.2 (SoHL 1.2; it's required here to look onto eyescanners to open doors)
  • The Ancients, aka The Artifact; Demo Alpha 0.1 was tested (modified SoHL 1.5; single map)
  • The Lost Hell (modified SoHL 1.2 / SoHL 1.2 compatible)
  • The Trap v1.51 (modified SoHL 1.2 / SoHL 1.2 compatible)
  • Time Machine (modified SoHL 1.2 / SoHL 1.2 compatible; single map)
  • Timeline III: Heart of Darkness (SoHL 0.5; has minor problems with using of original SoHL 1.2)
  • TWHL Tower (SoHL 1.8)
  • Underground 2 Demo (SoHL 1.2)
  • Xen-Warrior v1.5 & 1.6 (modified SoHL 1.0 / SoHL 1.2 compatible; Android port is also available)

Compatible total conversions, fun or horror mods (or other mods and games which are using in a most part their own resources, weapons and characters or which have a very different plot):

Compatible unfinished or demonstration mods (any kind of alpha, beta, demo versions of mods which have no complete storyline or which have been cancelled in development, so they can be not fully featured or can contain some inner bugs; however these mods have no incompatibilities with Xash3D):

Compatible mini-mods with a custom game code, featuring only 1 singleplayer map:

  • Alternative Origin
  • Ashfield (there is inner bug of disappearing of some models on the map after save/reload)
  • BooM: Return to Huknenn Demo
  • Fat-Shift Mini-Demo (open liblist.gam or gameinfo.txt file and replace line startmap "c0a0" with startmap "test_01", then play a game)
  • GT Mod Demo (start only from gt.bat file; saves are not working properly; to restart map type restart command into console)
  • Hero Squad Beta 1 (third-person tactical mod by Brendon Chung; mod contains 1 singleplayer map, that have been successfully tested, and there are 3 multiplayer maps, which weren't tested)
  • Infection Demo
  • Lead Eaters Beta 1 (third-person zombie-shooter mod by Brendon Chung)
  • Light of Hope demo No1
  • Mortal Kombat Forever Demo (start new game via Multiplayer menu; you can fight against a second player or against a computer-controlled bot)
  • Mustang Sally Beta 1 (third-person space-shooter mod by Brendon Chung; mod contains 1 singleplayer map, that have been successfully tested, and there are 4 multiplayer maps, which weren't tested; before you play the mod remove or rename btns_main.bmp file from gfx\shell folder, it has a wrong format and causes crash at start)
  • Pulse: Puzzel Demo (set fps_max parameter to 60 in config.cfg file or via console to prevent sticking in the elevator)
  • Re-Mod Demo
  • Thanatophobia The Bunker Demo (to enable all visual enchancements in the game take opengl32.dll file from the mod PARANOIA or Cry of Fear and put it into the main Xash3D directory)
  • The Weldt Beta 1 (arena mod by Brendon Chung; there is only 1 playable singleplayer map and 4 multiplayer ones, which weren't tested; saves are not working)

Mods that have minor incompatibilities which can interrupt normal gameplay or completing a mod (but still almost totally playable):

  • Battle for Life Beta 2.0 (remove cl_dlls\client.dll file from mod's folder, otherwise mod won't run; without this file some of new mod's features will not work, but they anyways aren't used in the singleplayer game)
  • Black OPS Redux (some advanced game options can not be configured from Xash3D game menu, but only by using console commands; some visual effects can look different)
  • Chemical Existence (you can get stuck inside a moving truck in the middle of the mod on level change - use noclip command when the truck stops to repair your position)
  • DANGER (most of background music tracks were renamed by the autor from WAV file extension to DMF, so Xash3D can't play them; also there is a small problem with primary attack of the gauss - its' beam visually shoots with deflection from real target - just ignore this)
  • Dopusk31 (you must set the original hl.dll from valve folder as main game dll in gameinfo.txt to play this mod; also game can crash on level trasitions or on player's death if flashlight is enabled)
  • Half-Life: Decay (latest Xash3D builds got rid off the old problem of crashes; the only current issue is that all mod's maps are always available to play in the Create Server dialog, instead of unlocking them duiring the game)
  • Plasma Beta Alpha (this mod is based on the code of Arrange Mod: Rebirth mod and because of that you can find there different visual glitches; at the first start of the mod the screen will be white, you just need to restart the map once again; to play multiplayer maps change mp_entity "info_player_deathmatch" parameter in gameinfo.txt file to mp_entity "info_player_start")
  • Rebellion (initial mod is fully functional only under WON Half-Life v1.0.1.6 or earlier; but you can use cross-platform version instead, it fixes major problems with game code and allows to play the mod properly even on Linux and OS X; Android port is also available)
  • Stargate TC SG-1 Missions (you can get some small visual and gameplay glitches while playing, but they are not interfere with successful completing of any mission)
  • Static Friction BETA Demo 1.2 (there is a potential problem of crashes on starting a new map with original Xash3D; if this happens for you, use latest builds of Xash3D FWGS to play the mod properly)
  • Surprise! Mod v0.4 (tested in singleplayer game; there are some minor differences in visual effects, but they don't affect the gameplay)
  • Sweet Half-Life (you can experience random crashes during fights against aliens; script with gargantua at map shl11 is fixed in latest builds of Xash3D) + SHL_12x (rejected map from Sweet Half-Life)
  • The Escape (there is a couple of strange glitches on a map evasion7, but they are not interrupting a gameplay, just don't forget to download and install all of presented fixes for the mod)
  • Visitors (you can get stuck in a moving train in the beginning of the mod on level change - type restart command in the console to reload a map with a right position; cross-platform version and Android port are also available)
  • X-Half-Life: Deathmatch v3.0.3.5 - (every version has as inner flaws, as minor problems of compatibility with Xash3D; v3.0.3.7 is mostly recommended for playing the singleplayer Half-Life campaign; for v3.0.3.6 you have to remove *.ent-files from maps folder to prevent crashes)

Incompatible mods (constantly crashing mods or mods which can not use properly some of their important features with Xash3D):

  • Arrange Mod: Rebirth (too hardly modified and unstable)
  • Time Shadows Beta 0.1 (this mod requires a using of Direct3D mode, but it's not supported by Xash3D; after you start a new game, try to switch Xash3D with Alt-Enter to the windowed mode and then back to the fullscreen to fix partially mod's rendering; r_fullbright 1 cheat can help you against darkness)

P. S. Please keep in mind that most of those mods were tested with original builds of Xash3D by Unkle Mike. The proper support of some mods was added only in latest builds of Xash3D, so you still may have problems using outdated builds of Xash3D or Xash3D FWGS. Also, because the engine was rewritten many times, there is a chance, that some of mods successfully tested on previous builds may show problems with latest builds. So if you use a latest Xash3D build (4344 currently) and see a problem, which looks like engine-side bug, please report.

Xash3D FWGS is currently based on old builds of original Xash3D (3366 - 3598), but they added a lot of new features, so it can have as some advantages (e. g., there is a touch control system, so you can easily play on Windows tablets), as some flaws (because of specifics of a porting or a lack of testing). Also, be sure to check GitHub depots of FWGS project, because the versions posted on ModDB are outdated already, so don't use them. Install the basic FWGS release v0.19.2 and apply updates from one of branches with latest autobuilds for corresponding version.

Original Xash3D & Xash3D FWGS are not fully compatible, so if you want to try both of them (on Windows, of course), create a separate installation of the game and mods for each of them, in different directories. If you want to report about any bug, please provide as more detailed information as possible (version and build of Xash3D, version of OS, mod name and its' version, a map where the bug is happening, what is wrong exactly, comparing to the gameplay with GoldSrc). By the way, latest builds of Xash3D (FWGS not yet) use GoldSrc-compatible format of saved games, so you can swap save-files between Xash3D and original Half-Life to examine a problem.


Can I just say that the amount of work you have put into this is amazing!

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Qwertyus Author

Thanks! This really takes time.

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Converted Blue Shift map with bspfix (you have to convert every map by one).
Link: Valvedev.info

Now Blue shift works on latest build, but once game crashed on ba_tram3.bsp just before exiting the train. All the rest works fine for me.

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How does it work though?

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I've converted all the BS maps with bspfix, I've put in the fixed maps from this patch: (https://www.moddb.com/games/half-life-blue-shift/downloads/half-life-blue-shift-sp-map-fixes-patch), but the map transition in ba_yard2 doesn't work and I'm just stuck at a wall.

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Qwertyus Author

Use Blue Shift Patch by Shambler Team, never had any issues with it.

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The Opposing Force dll link does not work anymore, mind updating it or sharing another mirror? I'm really looking forward to play it on Xash3d.

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Qwertyus Author

Try again.

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Thanks for that!

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any fix for tfc

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Qwertyus Author

No fix needed, it works fine, just make sure to set this:
cl_lw "0"
to make weapons to show up properly.

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qwertyus ¿half life gold does none virus? ¿or not?

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Qwertyus Author

Never use ****** paranoic anti-virus programs.
In most cases their "detection" is just a suspicion because of specific EXE's packing methods.

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ah ok thanks ;)

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I'd list Dark Future as incompatible, as one of the maps refuses to work under Xash.

The map in question is 'darkf6', and if you try to load it, the game initially gave a "No free edicts" error. Editing the gameinfo.txt file to change the max_edicts value to 2048 (the same fix you've listed for Black Guard) then makes the game an entirely different error:

"Host_Error: Mod_LoadMarkFaces: bad surface number in 'maps/darkf6.bsp'"

...which is a new one on me! The mod works fine in Steam, so this really has me stumped.

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Qwertyus Author

Confirm that, same error happens to darkf26.bsp also. Not sure how to fix that. Looks like those maps have an error which is treated as critical. Strange enough because I haven't seen this issue anywhere else.

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I wasn't aware it happened on another map - I just kept the mod on Steam after the error in the first one. Glad to see you're more on the ball than I!

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Swiss Cheese Halloween 2002 does not seem compatible. Barfs out on loading the client.dll


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Qwertyus Author

Play original version. It's SoHL based, and 100% doesn't have this problem.
You probably have installed that Steam Pipe patch, but it's not needed for Xash3D.

P. S. Almost 100% of problems with loading of client.dll are caused by the case, that someone use client.dll from modern Steam Pipe version of Half-Life (year 2013 and newer). So if you see this issue, just delete client.dll and play.

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