Source SDK Hammer Tutorial - Normal Maps


You need photoshop for this tutorial



I’ve never been a whizz at textures and normal maps took me a while to figure out, so if theres anybody like me who takes a while at learning stuff i figured i’d make a very easy to understand tutorial. If you do have any questions, don’t worry about PMing me either on here or steam. If this goes down well, i may do some other tutorials, step by step. I’ll probably sometime do another tutorial on using a normal map program, such as crazy bump and others but it’s pretty much the same just with no photoshop.

Tools needed

NVIDIA NormalMap Plugin

Click the image

Click the image

:golfclap: Will come in handy next time I’m on a comp with Phoshop.

Nice tut, but if you’re using VTFEdit, why not use that to make the normal map?

You can also do normals with crazy bump.

OP’s way gets better results

It looks pretty similar to me.

since when could VTFEdit make normal maps

Thanks for the tutorial mate, help a bunch.

Import > Generate Normal Map.

When you import an image you can just check the box “Generate Normal Map.”

Edit: ^Damn you ~ZOMG

seems limited though, the photoshop plugin has much more options



How’s it limited?

I mean, what would you want to edit on a normal map?

The way provided in the tut has more options and is generally better, why are you so dead-set on defending VTFEdit

I’m not, I just use it and think it’s good.

Also, do you have some kind of problem with me?

VTFEdit is pretty poor as tools go.

The normal map creator is inferior to the method shown here, the vmt editor is inferior to the one in VIDE, the vtf creation algorithms have butchered the mipmaps on textures I’ve tried to make several times, forcing me to use vtex.exe anyway. All round I dislike the program greatly.

Half the mapping section does but nobody ever said anything

you’d be suprised on what you can edit

VTFEdit is a pretty poor tool, but for what i used it for it was fine.

cheers for reminding me i needed to get vide too

Nice tut OP.

Another quick tip to strengthen your normalmaps in photoshop, make a duplicate layer or your normal map and set it’s blendmode to overlay. You can then rinse and repeat the process to make the bumps on your normals more prevalent. If you only want to enhance the larger details of your textures then blur some of the overlay layers.


Always been a fan of good lighting, sadly i’ve never tried anything to do with editing main files, until i decided i wanted a Sci-Fi type map with cool lighting. It’s a pretty simple thing to do, but works very well when used.

Tools needed


Click the image

Click the image

Is it possible to make normal maps with GIMP?