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Basic - Creating Icons from Screenshots



Model Reviewer
Level 27
May 8, 2012

How to Create:

Simple Unit Icon

Hello there, and welcome to this very basic tutorial!
Are you working on a project and having your OCD triggered for not having a precise icon for one of your custom units?

Fear no more!
In this tutorial, I will show you how to create basic icons using these useful tools.

Navigate :

I. Taking a Screenshot

1. Open your model using Magos Model Editor. Navigate to File > Open and choose your model. If you want to create an icon of original/ingame Warcraft III model, click here.

2. Go to Windows > Animation Controller, a window will pop up.

3. Find the "Stand" animation or whichever you like, Magos will play the animation. You may close this window if you have chosen your animation.

# If your model has grey background, collision spheres and bones, hide them because they will mess up the look of the model. These steps will show you how.

4. Go to Edit > Properties, a window will pop up.

5. Change the background into black for a good result. Uncheck the flags of the "Bones" and "Collision Shapes" in display section to hide them. Press "OK" to proceed.

# This is the final look of the model display. Get a good angle by using your left, right and scroll mouse button to move the camera. Use View > Reset Camera if your camera screwed up.

6. If you're using Windows 7, Go to Start Button -> All Programs -> Accessories -> Snipping Tool. You can use another screen-capturing software.

7. Use the Snipping Tool to capture the model. Left click and drag your cursor around the screen and try to form a square. Release your left mouse button and your image will be captured. Navigate to File > Save As to save your capture.

II. Converting the Image

1. Open the Button Manager. Go to File > Open file... and open your captured image.

# Once Button Manager has loaded the image, it will probably look like this. It is because the image is too large and doesn't fit the 64x64 border. But don't worry, this is where I'll show you one of the most useful tools in Button Manager.

2. Go to Tools > Fit to size 64x64. Some sick magic will happen and your image will be shrunk into 64x64. Apply borders by clicking on the "Button" border or anything else if you want them as abilities.

3. Save the file by navigating to File > Save file as. Make sure the saved extension is in Blizzard Pictures (.blp). Once you have saved the icon, a DISBTN icon will be automatically created as well as a part of Button Manager's usefulness.


# If you want to take a picture of an already existing Warcraft 3 model, please follow these steps.

1. In Magos Model Editor, go to Windows > MPQ Browser, a window will appear.

2. If you have your Model Editor installed inside the Warcraft 3 folder, go to File and choose one of the MPQs (War3.mpq is the main MPQ). If you have your Model Editor installed anywhere else, or choosing one of the MPQs doesn't work, go to File > Open and choose one of the MPQs in your Warcraft 3 folder.

3. Once the MPQ has been loaded, go to Units folder and find your unit, or Buildings folder for structures, and Doodads folder for doodads. Double-click the model (In .mdx or .mdl extension) and the editor will load the model.

That's it! Thank you for reading!
I hope this is useful for you. :)


Arena Moderator
Level 45
Jul 29, 2008
I was hoping this was a tutorial for "proper" screenshot icons (i.e. take the screenshot, and then draw over it)... But this is also good. And for a tutorial, it's excellently put-together; lots of images & organization.

Verah Noice.
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