Complete List of Modding Tools

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There have been countless of threads appearing in various places around the forums concerning what software/tool to use for [insert modding field here]. This list compiles as many possible known tools, free and paid, used among the Warcraft III communities for modding in each separate field, from Music to 3D Modelling and Skinning to Triggering. Hope this helps!

3D Modelling Tools
NameLinkFree PaidAdditional Information
Autodesk 3ds MaxHere
Blizzard used Autodesk's program to create much, if not all of the default models in Warcraft III. Very expensive though.
Here you can try to test the free software, as long your products don't make profits.
Milkshape 3DHere
Less expensive that Autodesk and relatively useful for low-poly modelling. However, you will require a plugin for it downloadable here or here.
GmaxHere
A free modelling application based of Autodesk's 3ds Max for the less privileged. Despite it being less powerful and extensive as Autodesk's paid software, Gmax is more targetted at game content creation, perfectly suited for Warcraft III modelling. Project was discontinued in 2005 with the latest version being version 1.2.
Oinkerwinkle's MDL ToolsHere
The tool of choice for many MDL editors. Oiker's site recently went down but fortunately, Tim at wc3c.net managed to save all of his tools in their latest version. Completely free and good choice for any first time modeler.
Magos's Model EditorHere
Another user-made modeling tool. Magos's Model Editor, also available here on the Hive, contains both a Model Viewer and Editor completely dedicated to Warcraft III modding. There is also a built-in MPQ Browser.
MdlvisHere
Yet another fan-made modeling software, except Mdlvis is primarily used for animation and boning models, instead of actual creation.
Warcraft III ViewerHere
Not so much as to creating models, WC3 Viewer is used to view any 2D/3D objects in Warcraft III and make file conversions.
BlenderHere
A free open-source modeling software that enables animation, UV unwrapping, 3D modeling, texturing and the thousand and one other things required to make a working model. The one downside is that there is isn't any plugin that supports the latest version of Blender. Killabong is making a workable plaugin for Blender though! Cheer him on and show your support here!
Matrix EaterHere
A customized, cross-platform version of Oinkerwinkle's Vertex Modifier. It features multi-tabbed editing and a powerful import feature. The tool is still under construction and is written in Java.

Triggering Extensions
NameLinkFreePaidAdditional Information
Jass NewGen Pack v5dHere
One of the many mandatory tools part of an aspiring triggerer's arsenal of extensions, Jass NewGen is a collection of various other tools to make it more convenient for people to begin modding. Includes JassHelper and pJass as well as Reinventing the Craft.
Jass NewGen Pack v5eHere
A user-update of Jass NewGen Pack v5d. This new version includes an updated TESH, pJASS, JassHelper, a grimExt hotfix, and an extra tool for vJASS campaign building.
Jass NewGen Pack 2.0Here
A user-update of Jass NewGen Pack (it is in its beta stage at the moment). It includes all of the features of previous JNGP versions, as well as a multi-session tool, shell-extensions, and custom test map configurations.
JassCraftHere
Another extensive tool used by much of the triggering community. Like any other triggering extensions, it was fan-made, created and developed to use JASS, Blizzard's custom scripting syntax which made Warcraft III.
AdicHelperHere
or
Here
cJass is an extension to Blizzard's JASS2 language, which is compatible, but not without bugs, with the popular vJass syntax. The goal of this tool is to grant coders more possibilities to create high-quality and simple code.

2D Art Software
NameLinkFreePaidAdditional Information
Adobe PhotoshopHere
Adobe Photoshop is the extremely popular among both professional and amateur artists, for reasons well deserved. One of the most extensive and powerful 2D editing platforms, Adobe Photoshop is, despite it's price, very popular even among the Warcraft III community, utilizing it's powerful engine for skinning, texturing and even map-making.
GIMPHere
A free photo editing software which has also gained quite a reputation among the digital artists, GIMP is a free and at the same time good and well-used image editing software usable by anyone. Extensive tutorials exist that can help even the dumbstruck gain grasp on GIMP.
Corel PaintShop ProHere
Corel PaintShop Pro, whilst not as popular as our previous two, is an excellent photo editing software that could possibly rival even Photoshop. Cheaper than Photoshop but also less extensive and powerful, PaintShop is still, nevertheless, a good tool for any 2D Artist.
Paint.NETHere
This open-source photo editing software that packs a load of features and meat for it's size, a mere 1.3MB and at the same doesn't coat a single cent is a very good all-round started for any artist scarce on hard drive space as well as cash.
IrfanViewHere
Just like Paint.NET, IrfanView is another budget-tight piece of software that can get any artist excited. Not only does it edit photos, but it also batch processes them into different formats, useful for your screenshots and optimizes the filesize of your photos so it doesn't claw up so much space.

Multimedia
NameLinkFreePaidAdditional Information
AudacityHere
Audacity, a name familiar to many sound and music developers, is an excellent and free sound recording and editing program. Don't let the free-of-charge part fool you. Audacity is still an excellent software, rivaling even some of the paid software that is used by professionals.
FrapsHere
Fraps is a popular screen capturing and recording software primarily targeted at gamers who require to make videos. This software is perfect for creating YouTube videos for your new Warcraft map! The downside is that there is a free version and a paid version of Fraps, of which the latter has a much more capable tool.
DxtoryHere
Dxtory is a movie capture tool only for DirextX/OpenGL application. The codec of Dxtory can record original pixel data as it is. A quality can be pursued to a limit with video source without degradation.

Miscellaneous Software or Extensions
NameLinkFreePaidAdditional Information
ConvertShotsHere
In case you didn't know, Warcraft III screenshots file types are not compatible with any online image hosting website. However, ConvertShots has ended that problem. Not only can you convert them, but they're also extremely fast and simple to do as well as easy to install and can also convert your 1001 screenshots in a giffy!
Button ManagerHere
A nifty tool to create borders for Wacraft III files with a friendly user interface. If your antivirus detects this program as trojan, you probably have McAfee, Comodo, eSafe or Prevx. They don't know anything about exe-optimization-by-hands and UPX. One downside is that it is only compatible on Windows OS only.
Vexorian's Map OptimizerHere
Vexorian's Map Optimizer is generally a name known to all Warcraft modders, new or old. Optimize maps and make them smaller or protect your map from being openable and pirated in the World Editor.
WinRARHere
WinRAR is an extremely popular file compression tool used by many large mapfiles in order to decrease download time. Used for all file formats, including non-Warcraft III maps, WinRAR is useful as both a modding and general-purpose and possibly one of the few mandatory tools required by users. WinRAR has both a trial and paid version where the former has a 30-day trial version, much like most of Adobe's software.
7-zipHere
Unlike it's popular conterpart, WinRAR, 7-zip is an open-source, something WinRAR is not, and completely free. Although not used as much, 7-zip is probably just as good in terms of compression.

MPQ and BLP tools
NameLinkFreePaidAdditional Information
MPQ MasterHere
MPQ Master is probably one the most powerful MPQ tool available in all aspects. From replacing to browsing.
BLPConverterHere
BLPConverter.exe converts BLP files (Blizzard's proprietary texture file type) into standard PNG files and back again. Rest assured! The link I'm sending you is not a UI for WoW, it's a standalone program. BLPConverter uses a Windows command line interface which allows it to be easily incorporated in batch files/scripts and give the user a great amount of control about the conversion and the created file's format.
BLP LabHere
Short for BLP Laboratory, BLP Lab is an excellent tool for viewing and converting, as pointed out by PurgeandFire, majority of the used file formats used in Warcraft modding, from BLP to PNG, even BLP2, which is the file format used by Blizzard's WoW textures!

It would be helpful you would post any other known software that maybe you use! Share with us!

It would also be very helpful if anyone could create a good short and simple description for some of the tools, especially the ones under Triggering Extensions as I do not have any experience whatsoever in this area of expertise.

Hope it helped.


10 / 29 / 2012 - PurgeandFire
  • Updated MDLVis download link.
  • Added Dxtory.
7 / 1 / 2013 - PurgeandFire
  • Added Matrix Eater.
  • Fixed some typos.
 
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Yeah you should say that WEU is not recommended. (you can leave the link there though) Jass NewGen Pack does everything that WEU does, except for the extended GUI, and JNGP is better to prevent map corruption since it creates like 26 map backups.

The one downside is that there is only one usable plugin which allows it be used on Warcraft III, Warblender which is very buggy and discontinued.

I don't know if "buggy" appropriately describes it. Warblender is unsupported for the latest versions of Blender. ;) Sooda made one that works for static meshes as far as I know, and killabong is currently working on an importer/exporter in his thread:
http://www.hiveworkshop.com/forums/...-277/blender-2-6-import-export-plugin-206650/

(You don't have to link it though, I was just putting it out there)

But otherwise, nice job. It is useful--hopefully it'll get a sticky. :D

EDIT: Perhaps you should include MPQ tools and BLP tools. It isn't necessary, but it could be useful.
 
Level 12
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Should put

Paint.net under 2D Art software, that and MS Paint should go there too, maybe even irfanview.
http://www.irfanview.com/
http://www.getpaint.net/
Thanks! But I don't think MS Paint really needs any advertising. Good call on the others though.

KILL IT!!! SENT IT TO THE AFTERLIFE!!!

Honestly it is not good to advertise that tool due to all the problems it has.
Sorry about that! Didn't really know that. Hadn't tried it out myself, but oh well.


I don't know if "buggy" appropriately describes it. Warblender is unsupported for the latest versions of Blender. ;) Sooda made one that works for static meshes as far as I know, and killabong is currently working on an importer/exporter in his thread:
http://www.hiveworkshop.com/forums/...-277/blender-2-6-import-export-plugin-206650/

(You don't have to link it though, I was just putting it out there)

But otherwise, nice job. It is useful--hopefully it'll get a sticky. :D

EDIT: Perhaps you should include MPQ tools and BLP tools. It isn't necessary, but it could be useful.
Thanks. Wasn't aware of that either.
 
One more thing. As far as I know, WoW textures are .BLP2 files (I don't think it is shown in the extension but they are under that file format) and Wc3 textures are .BLP files. As far as I know, they use different file formats so the converter might not work for wc3. (I have not checked though, I am just judging by the description)

I think that instead, BLP Lab is a good option since it supports more file formats (including both BLP and BLP2) and it has some nice optimization stuff:
http://www.hiveworkshop.com/forums/tools-560/blp-lab-v0-5-0-a-137599/

Otherwise, again this is a useful thread and well-organized. =D
 
Level 17
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You should also probably give the link of the "official" jasshelper, since the one included in the JNGP is really outdated.
And giving the link of the new "unofficial" jasshelper made by cohadar would be good :
http://www.hiveworkshop.com/forums/warcraft-editing-tools-277/jasshelper-2011-12-19-a-208802/

I disagree about AdicParser, i mean it's not fully compatible with vJass, and there are still known bugs, and i no i'm not bitching their work.

Also, it has been said that the new jasshelper by cohadar doesn't handle cJass.
Probably because of the new loops, i don't care that much myself, but it must be known.
 
Level 12
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Added WinRAR, 7-zip and Vexorian's Map Optimizer under Miscellaneous, as well as BLP Lab under MPQ and BLP Tools (Thanks to PurgeandFire). Also modified AdicParser's additional info, stating that it is compatible but not without bugs.

And thanks to Rui for sticky!
 
Level 29
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I was thinking about getting Autodesk for my birthday... then I realized its cost. I think you need to underline and boldface the word "Very" in caps lock. Holy crap, 3600 U.S. dollars? That's insane.

its an awesome system tho lol. Autodesk software is very very good. With great software comes great cost lol.

Anyways i think this tutorial should include the new JNGP 2.0
Just say thats its in beta for now. But it already has usefull attachments.
For one it has a multisession tool built into it.
 
ConvertShots link for some reason is broken (not the link here, but from the stated link to the main download link)

Click this link instead:
Screen Shot 2013-09-12 at 11.10.24 AM.png
 
Level 2
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For Autodesk 3DS max, students in college or university can get these for free with limitations ofcourse but for a 3 year licenced version.

The only thing you have to do is go to the Autodesk - Eduction - Student Section and register with your College/Uni email account and it should be fine.
(Since November 2013 they also ask which Uni or College you go to)*

Note*: If your educative institution isn't in their database (or on the list) you probably won't be able to get it.
 
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Level 6
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Issue: The titles of 'Jass NewGen Pack v5e' and 'Jass NewGen Pack 2.0' have been positioned inversely.
Suggestions: The Ladik's MPQ Editor, NeoDex and War3 Art tools should be added.
 
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pyf

pyf

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Mar 21, 2016
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Milkshape 3D:
Web site //chumbalum.swissquake.ch/ seems to be dead.
Working site: chUmbaLum sOft

Magos:
Web site //home.magosx.com/ seems to be dead.
Working Wayback Machine replacement link: War3 Model Editor

Jass NewGen Pack 2.0
Link needs updating (please see the post above)

IrfanView:
Freeware for non-commercial use.
As of version 4.44 (release date: 2016-12-20), the Luratech formats (JP2/JPM) are now Freeware (Saving and Batch mode)

7-Zip:
Maybe you will want to update your description, according to this info?
https://www.7-zip.org/history.txt


Cool list, btw.
:thumbs_up:

Suggestions: [...] War3 Art tools should be added.
Official site:
Warcraft III - Files and Links
 
Level 7
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um.... i hate to interrupt.
View media item 124665Are there any programs that can open up .pak files, .w3k files, .idx files, .index files, .000 files, and any other files used/created by the new WC3 patches containing the models, textures/skins, icons, et cetera? :confused:2

Too bad Model Editor, WC3V and others including MPQ-master can't open/view them for a reason. :(


any help on that please? :)
 
Level 1
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Hey, looking for a simple to use/learn tool to just take a Warcraft 3 model and flip it horizontally, don't know if that's a hard thing to do. (It's an elf commander who for god knows what reason wields his sword in his left hand...not to hate on southpaws, but I just want my custom map to have consistency)
 
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