Custom Loading Screen Tutorial V1.5

Level 22
Joined
Feb 14, 2004
Messages
3,311
Hello!

Its possible, yes a custom loading screen can be added into your maps to improve its appearences.
In this tutorial, I will explain to you all, how to do it. If you don't beleive me, I have seen other maps with custom loading screens and even once my map had it too. As I work along in this tutorial, I guarantee you will be satsifed with the results.

- GENERAL -

Difficulty: Medium+

Estimated Work Time
Beginner: 15-30mins
Skilled person: 10-15mins
Confident Pro: 5-10mins

Recommended/Needed Tools

Paint Shop Pro
www.jasc.com

Photoshop CS
www.adobe.com

Serif Photoplus
www.serif.com

-----------------------------
The GIMP
www.gimp.org

Irfanview
www.irfanview.com

TIP: Try to always stay updated on these image programs!

REQUIRED
Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne
Some skills with the import manager.
Some good skills with image programs

- WORKING -

1. You need a 1024 x 768 pixles image or a reasonable size as your custom loading screen. (must be quite large)
If you have problems doing this, try resizing with a easier paint program. (I highly suggest Irfanview as I will be using Irfanview for the whole of this Tutorial )

I got myself an interesting image
Sophos-CustomLoadingScreenTutP1.jpg

Now to resize...
Sophos-CustomLoadingScreenTutP2.jpg

Heh, done
Sophos-CustomLoadingScreenTutP3.jpg

2. Slice the 1024 x 768 image for your custom loading scren into 4 parts. (like dividing a piece of cake into 4) NOW FOLLOW CAREFULLY THIS PART - Bottom left and bottom right sliced parts of the image MUST be 512 x 256 pixles and Top left and Top Right parts MUST be 512 x 512 pixles. TIP: Crop the images slowly by hand with a good and easy to use paint program. Also look at the screenshots.

Bottom left (freehand crop)
Sophos-CustomLoadingScreenTutP4.jpg

Top left (freehand crop)
Sophos-CustomLoadingScreenTutP5.jpg

3. Once you've done that, you should have 4 parts of the loading screen image. You can do it after or before imporing them into your map, but I suggest renaming them now. Now rename the parts:

Bottom Left part > LoadingScreenBL

Bottom Right part > LoadingScreenBR

Top Left part > LoadingScreenTL

Top Right part > LoadingScreenTR

Renaming all 4 parts
Sophos-CustomLoadingScreenTutP6.jpg

4. Convert ALL of the parts (make sure they are renamed correctly) to .tga or .blp TIP: I recommend .blp as its much smaller but there are more problems with it. 28/5/04 < I have discovered the problem with why some loading screen parts will not work even though they are converted to .blp. This is because: the .tga bits are not high enough, 32 bits is required, it hasn't got alpha channels. If you just want to insert a opaque alpha channel then use Wc3 Viewer to do it for you easily.

5. Ok, put them in a folder for easy acess for the next step. This is optional.

Sophos-CustomLoadingScreenTutP8.jpg

6. Start up World Editor (or your map) and go to Import Manager.

7. Import the 4 parts of your custom Loading Screen (make sure they are renamed, resized correctly, properly converted) with Import File or Import Files...

The folder created earlier makes things easy
Sophos-CustomLoadingScreenTutP9.jpg

8. Once they are imported, remove their paths from w3mapImportered to just the loading screen part proper name. Eg: War3MapImported\LoadingScreenBL.blp to LoadingScreenBL.blp remove all 4 of em. The " use custom path " should be ticked.

You have to do this
Sophos-CustomLoadingScreenTutP10.jpg

9. Now, import the LoadingScreen.mdx file. TIP: There are specific LoadingScreens.mdx. There are 2 types. One is designed by Blizzard for .tga parts and another is modified from Blizzard's by someone from campaigncreations.org. Try to mix these together and get them right.
Below will tell you which LoadingScreen.mdx is for whether its for .tga or .blp. This is very important!

> If you are using .tga...
Export LoadingScreen.mdx from the import manager of Blizzard's " Monolith Map " and put it somewhere which you will use later, this is important or else the custom loading screen won't work! .blp won't work if you have this one but only .tga
TIP: At the end of this Tutorial there will be some needed resources for help
if you can't do this.

Get it from Monolith! (Exporting it from its Import Manager)
Sophos-CustomLoadingScreenTutP11.jpg

If you are using .blp... (recommended)
Download the specific LoadingScreen.mdx from campaigncreations.org as this specific one allows .blp parts to be the custom loading screen. A .blp custom loading screen saves tons of space so I recommend this. .tga won't work if you have this one but only .blp TIP: At the end of this Tutorial the zip file will include this specific LoadingScreen.mdx as well!


10. Minimize/exit Import manager for the " Monolith Map ". Start back your map. Go to " Scenario " on the toolbar, then go to " Map Loading Screen... " underneath it.

11. Tick " Use Imported File " and select the LoadingScreen.mdx as it. Then press ok. Note that the path of it is also displayed.

Yes! We're done!!
Sophos-CustomLoadingScreenTutP13.jpg


12. Restart (close it and open it) your map and apply the changes again to make the World Editor used to it. Then test the map, and WALLA!! congrats!

" Well done Sopho and you " - Sopho
Sophos-CustomLoadingScreenTutP14.jpg

- QUICK FAQs -
Having trouble? You may find your question below before asking

Q: I use .tga and the loading screen is all black! Why is this?
A: Make sure the .tga is 32 bits or 24 bits (I think). Irfanview will convert it sucessfully for you. Make sure the paths are also correct!

Q: Arghh!! The loading screen is all messed up! Its not correct the parts are displayed wrongly!! Help! I can still see it though.
A: Make sure the LoadingScreen parts are correct. For example the Bottom Left (BL) is named as TR (top right) and the TL (top left) is named as BR (bottom right) and so on... Just correct the names. Also make sure the sizes of each part is precisely accurate. (Remember what I did earlier on in this Tutorial)

Q: I use .blp and the loading screen is all black, how come?
A: When you converted the .tga, .jpg or .bmp, to .blp was it 32bits? No? Then a opaque alpha channel will be needed but I don't really understand those things so download WC3 Viewer to add them for you easily.

Q: I can't find " Monolith " , I'm confused with the 2 LoadingScreen models help!
A: Below is a zip which includes the 2 loading screen models. I have also made things easier by labelling the Loading Screen models. Remember when you import them using the ones in the zip, get rid of the TGA or BLP at the end!

Q: I can't find the loadingscreen.mdx for .blp!! Help
A: Here http://www.campaigncreations.org/

Q: My custom loading screen shows up black
A: Make sure you used the correct loadingscreen.mdx for your .tga/.blp

Q: Can I use .blp and .tga in my custom loading screen?
A: Unfortunately, you cannot

===================================================

Hope that help, if anyone else is looking at this, I hope this helped you too!
WARNING - Custom Loading Screens take up lots of space if you are using .tga. Try .blp [RECOMMENDED]
If you still have difficulties, PM me as I am usually free to help (But I don't think you will need it because I make things so easy)

Tutorial Version 1.5 (updated at 2/8/04)
Remember PM me if you still have questions, comments or thanks. NOTE - I cannot upload attachments on wc3sear tutorial version so you will have to try working it by yourself...
 
Last edited by a moderator:
Level 7
Joined
Mar 9, 2016
Messages
227
You forgot to mention to add the LoadingScreen.mdx Into the import manager of the user's map and than select it. Tutorial only said to export it and put it aside for later use.

Anyways, awesome tutorial. Helped a lot.

Don't ban me for replying to a 12 years old thread, please. Lol
 
Last edited:
You forgot to mention to add the LoadingScreen.mdx Into the import manager of the user's map and than select it. Tutorial only said to export it and put it aside for later use.

Anyways, awesome tutorial. Helped a lot.

Don't ban me for replying to a 12 years old thread, please. Lol

Replying for tutorials is not considered a necro-post. Don't worry.
 
Level 12
Joined
Jan 30, 2020
Messages
876
For Reforged and other versions supporting 16/9 resolution, use the attached loading screen model with a simple picture converted to BLP with no mipmaps and the name "Fullscreen.blp" (no path) in the asset manager.
 

Attachments

  • LoadingScreen.mdx
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Level 12
Joined
Jan 30, 2020
Messages
876
Not that I currently need a new model,
But I am curious.

This is definitely a different model, what does it do, and where does it come from ?
Thanks.
 
Level 12
Joined
Jan 30, 2020
Messages
876
Oh ok, can it handle a single fullHD image or does it require you to split the image in 4 parts like in the tutorial ?
 
Level 11
Joined
Apr 11, 2006
Messages
330
wow. I have literally spent hours on these loading screen tutorials... only this one finally came through... hallelujah.

I attached the loading screen mdx from monolith.

...


My OS is Win10 and I was trying to create a loading screen for Reforged.
I confirm this was the only working solution for me as well.
I spent hours and hours across several days to try all outdated tools for exporting .blps with bad results (black screen, crashing game, etc.). The best result I got was from some tool that left me with a picture crumpled into 512x512 pixels and not widening when loaded by the game.

So, the only working solution was dividing the file in 4 parts as described above, exporting them as .tga and complementing them with the file provided by Ender Wiggins.

Since I don't have the patience for "freehand" cutting, I have created two Adobe InDesign files that do it for me.
If you want, use this archive.
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1WGQ8FgyMWV7OI12JUUqp5BksByR4Ur-W/view?usp=sharing

1. Replace the picture of LoadingScreen.jpg with whatever your picture is.
2. Load both .indd files and update the links.
3. Export them (Ctrl+E) as jpg-s with the correct names (LoadingScreenBL.jpg etc.).
4. Convert those .jpg-s to .tga using Photoshop or whatever program you like.
5. Import them using Asset Manager along with the LoadingScreen.mdx file.
6. Remove the unneeded war3mapImported\ from the paths.
7. Go to Scenario >> Map Loading Screen and set it to point to LoadingScreen.mdx

__________________


However, I still can't make a custom war3mapPreview.tga appear in the lobby - unless it works, but only for those joining it?
 
Last edited:
Level 17
Joined
Feb 2, 2006
Messages
1,003
For Reforged and other versions supporting 16/9 resolution, use the attached loading screen model with a simple picture converted to BLP with no mipmaps and the name "Fullscreen.blp" (no path) in the asset manager.
Thx but does Reforged support loading screen textures of any size or will it just be scaled do? This tutorial should be updated for Reforged. I would like to use bigger textures and I don't like to cust my images into 4 parts.

Weirdly Reforged places the text for custom loading screens at the bottom left?!
 
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