Post tutorial RSS C&C 3: How to make a proper custom mini-map

Complete guide on how to create and put in game your mini-map, out of world builder.

Posted by on - Intermediate UI/HUD

Before anything please be aware that this guide is valid for C&C 3 Tiberium Wars (modded or not) only!

Pictures will be added soon.

C&C 3 Custom Mini-map Guide

Tools necessary:

-World Builder;

-Advanced picture editor (eg: Photoshop or Gimp);

1) How to take a screenshot of your map:

-Open World Builder, and go to your map;

-While in World Builder, press CTRL+F to enter a “top” camera view, from there you will need to go fullscreen with World Builder’s primary window;

-Center your map so as it fits perfectly your screen and you're able to still see all of it;

-In View options, enable MAP BOUNDARIES and in PARTIAL MAP SIZE enable 144 TITLES;

-In View options disable all objects & tools you obviously don’t need for your screenshot which are in general: OBJECT ICONS, WAYPOINTS, TRIGGER AREAS, SHADOWS, LABELS, OBJECTS, SOUND FLAGS, TIBERIUM FIELD RADIUS, (and other obvious things) but also CLOUDS, WATER and FOG.

Note 1: some objects like Bridges don’t go invisible after disabling OBJECTS, as such you’ll need to remove them to continue. AS LONG AS YOU DON’T SAVE you’ll be able to re-obtain these bridges while loading the same map file after taking the screenshot.

Note 2: after a certain distance (between the camera and the map) has been reached, roads and other things may disappear, so you’ll need to move your primary World Builder’s window and play around with its size until you can get the best configuration possible.

-(optional) For the best mini-map quality you’ll need to (in view options again) SET LOD to Ultra High;

-When you think you’re ready, make sure your World Builder’s primary window in selected (like you’re not on Google or something) and press CTRL+ALT+PRINT_SCREEN, that will take directly a screenshot of your entire selected window, and send it to your clipboard.

2) How to convert your screenshot:

-Now, open a nice picture management software like Photoshop or Gimp, and create a new file;

Please notice that I’m using Photoshop but it’s not mandatory.

-Press CTRL+V on the selected area of the bland image to paste your screenshot in the software;

-Now select all of the area strictly located inside your Map Boundaries (which should be in orange), and copy it by pressing CTRL+C;

-Create a new picture file and paste your final picture with CTRL+V;

-In hope that you’re using a great software, select and FLIP VERTICALLY all of your picture (because for unknown reasons, in C&C 3, mini-maps pictures are flipped vertically);

-Save/export (respectively for Photoshop or Gimp) your picture as a TARGA file (“.tga” extension) with the best options of conversion possible (if you know what you’re doing that is), save it somewhere you obviously can see it;

Note: since I use Photoshop I don’t know how other softwares handle conversions or if there’re converters online, but go ahead & look if needed!

From now on, you can skip to the third part to get your “raw” picture directly into the game. However, it’s obvious official maps have edited mini-maps (for instance the borders of hills are very black). This helps the player to clearly and quickly see where he can and can’t go.

As such if you want to improve your overall level design quality of your map you can do the following with a picture editor:

-Make the rough edges/borders/cliffs of your map thicker with black lines;

-Use a unique light blue color to place water where it should be, and, separate water and land with thick black lines too ;

-(optional) make the tiberium fields more apparent by creating a green/blue glow around their centers;

-(optional) place a bit of shading for the water;

3) How to correctly place your mini-map:

-Rename your targa file by leaving its name and adding at the end (before its extension): “_art”.

For example if your file’s name is “nod_vs_Gdi.tga”, you should rename it to “nod_vs_Gdi_art.tga”.

-Place your file inside your map folder (usually located in Appdata/Roaming/yourCnC3folder/Maps/yourMapName/);

That’s finally it for this detailed guide. Feel free to warn me about issues or ideas/processes I may have missed.


Thanks, I'll be sure to try this when I get round to it.

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