Types of textures for custom materials


This is not a tutorial for creating or applying materials for mapping, but rather a reference for commonly used types of images for a material. Please refer to other pages for relevant tutorials.

In order to put a texture onto any surface on a map, a material is required. To create a material, simply open Material Editor from the Workshop Tools, which looks something like below.

Screenshot 1


In general, the image(s) used for a material should meet the requirements below at minimum.

  • Format is .png
  • Width and height must be powers of 2 (e.g. 32, 64, 128, 256, etc.).


CS 2.0 uses the shader Csgo Simple by default for a material. A shader in this context is used to define different aspects of a material (e.g. how glossy it is, which part is trasparent, etc.). A material should have one image at minimum, which is used for coloring. If you simply want to put an image without any other settings to a surface of a map, then the Csgo Simple shader should be sufficient. Finally, the material will be saved as a .vmat file which can be browsed and used in Hammer Editor for mapping.

Image Name Suffixes

The list of image name suffixes below (non-exhaustive, more will be added as more updates come in) explains the use of different images for a material and how they work in a very high level. Please note that some of the images can only be used for the shader Csgo Complex. To make a glass material, please use the shader Csgo Glass, which will be covered in a separate tutorial.

Example Usage

For example, if you want to create a material my_material.vmat that has coloring and is transparent, then two images should be created.

  • my_material_color.png for coloring, assuming its size is 1024 x 768 pixels.
  • my_material_trans.png for transparency mask, the size must be 1024 x 768 pixels, which means the sizes of all images must be the same.

Shader Parameters

  • _color
    • Used to tell the engine how to "paint" the surface.
    • Most of the materials should have this image at minimum.
    • Color Image
  • _mask
    • Color tint mask. This is useful when you want to duplicate an instance with a different color.
      • For example, if you want to put two cars of the same model but with different color, then you do not have to create a new material or a new model, you would just need to change the color tint of the instance.
    • White = full tinting, Black = no tinting.
  • _normal
    • Normal map, or known as a bump map, which is used to define how the surface looks like (e.g. orange peel texture).
    • It is rarely drawn or created by hand, there are multiple tools available to generate a normal map easily.
  • _trans
    • Close to an alpha mask, which is a grayscale image used to define the opacity of an image.
    • The part closer to white (i.e. grayscale value of 255) is more light blocking, while that closer to black (i.e. value of 0) is more transparent.
    • One example image is shown below, where the beverage container parts are visible and the rest will become invisible on the engine.
      • Trans Image
  • _selfillum
    • A grayscale image that allows creation of illumination without using a light entity.
    • White = 100% light, Black = 0% light.
    • The image below shows how the illumination looks like even without any light entities on the map. Notice how the yellow part illuminates.
      • Self-Illumination
  • _rough
    • An RGB image that defines how glossy or reflective the material is.
    • White = no reflection/flat, Black = highly reflective/glossy
    • A cube map should be used for the reflection to work.
    • The image below shows how the reflection works, note that the area is surrounded by the entity env_combined_light_probe_volume.
      • Roughness