Gerard

SA Modding Guide

126 posts in this topic

Okay I won't pretend to know everything about modding, but between all of us put together, I think we could pretty much cover it. This topic is going to be a guide to modding GTA San Andreas, and it's going to be built by you. All you have to do is reply to this topic with some useful information, I'll put it in this post if it's right, and delete your post. It's a simple, fast way to build up a big database of information. Please, nothing about other games, no questions, nothing silly/stupid, and don't repeat anything. Everybody could contribute something. Please reply if I've got something wrong too.

San Andreas Modding Guide

What is a "mod"?

A mod is a modification to a game or piece of software. We're talking about San Andreas, but you can get mods for many other games. A typical San Andreas mod could be changing a car, for example changing the Bullet into a McLaren F1, or changing the AT-400 into a Boeing 747. There are many different types of mod, and a wide variety too.

Can I mod my game?

There are several different versions of San Andreas, including console versions and multiple PC versions:

Game Moddable?
PC v1: This is the best platform to mod, and the easiest. V1 is the original version of the game, which was hit by the Hot Coffee fiasco. Most shops will not sell this version anymore.
PC v2/v3/v4: Version 2 or above do not allow for mods that change the main.scm, script.img, gta3.img, or other .img files. It also doesn't allow for memory hacking or real-time memory address altering, so trainers, car spawners, and MTA/SAMP will not work. However, you can still edit the smaller .dat files and presumably audio. It is recommended that you downgrade your game to Version 1.
Playstation 2 & Xbox Modding the PS2/Xbox version of the game is very hard, and not permitted by Rockstar/Sony/Microsoft. In order to do so, you will need a dual-layer DVD burner, a blank dual-layer DVD, DVD/ISO creation software, and a modchip. You must copy the DVD contents to the computer, install the mods like you would on the PC version, make the files into an ISO, and use software to make a bootable dual-layer DVD using the ISO file. You must burn to the DVD, then put it in your console. You must have a modchip or the console will give you a disc read error. We cannot provide support for Playstation/Xbox mods due to copyright/piracy issues
Vice City or GTAIII: You cannot use San Andreas mods in these earlier games, but VC and GTAIII have lots of mods of their own. Be careful because the process to install these mods is slightly different, because the filetypes have changed since. How to install a car mod for Vice City
GTA1 or GTA2: There are a small number of mods around for these games, but you can't alter classics - you'd take out all the classicness.
Half Life 2 or other games: Yes, you can modify most popular games, but most of us don't know how to do it. This is a GTA related forum, you know!

This guide will mainly focus on PC mods for Grand Theft Auto San Andreas v1.

What are the different types of mods?

You can change (MODify) cars, planes, helicopters, bikes, boats, buildings, landscapes, textures, the weather, missions, pedestrians, clothes, characters, speeds, settings, and almost any other aspect of the game you can imagine. You can download trainers that modify what the game is doing as it's doing it, using memory hacks. With trainers, you can spawn any vehicle out of nowhere, repaint cars wherever you are, put cars in garages, teleport yourself around, change your health/armour, pause/changee the time, and modify the weapons.

Where can I get some mods?

There are loads of mods in our downloads database, and there are more dotted around the internet too.

Who makes mods?

Mods are made by skilled fans, known as modders. Rockstar (who make GTA games) do not make mods for the game. These modders spend months or years learning their trade and making their mods. They all give away their mods for free, although you can buy lots of generic models from other sites that could be put into any game.

Can I make a mod myself?

Probably not straightaway, learning to mod can take quite a while, because you have to use several different pieces of software. It isn't impossible, but making good mods can take years of practice and hard work. By all means, if you have plenty of time on your hands, you should learn - it would be great to have some more modders. Just don't think it is as easy as drawing a car in an application, painting it a certain colour, and installing it in the game. For a start, you must be completely aware of how to install mods into San Andreas and, if you're making cars, be able to change some things on your own (like the handling and carcols). The best place to start would be textures (skins) for buildings, as they don't move or have animations.

I'm afraid that not many people here are modders, and the few that are don't have the time to sit with everybody and show them how to mod step by step. There are quite a few tutorials around the internet, but the best places to start (in my opinion) is by playing around in Sketchup or 3DS Max - and they aren't free either. Your best bet in almost every situation is to download ready built mods. I'm afraid that modders are often too busy to answer every request for a custom car.

Is it dangerous to mod my game?

Installing mods does not damage your game, unless you do something wrong. So long as your follow the instructions, and have a basic idea of what it is you're actually doing, you are unlikely to make a mistake. If you do make a mistake, you could either restore a backup (if you made one) or reinstall your game. Reinstalling your game does not get rid of your saved games, they are stored in 'My Documents'. For this reason, it is best to keep a backup of every file you edit or replace. The only file that is usually too big to backup is gta3.img - you should just backup every .dff or .txd inside gta3.img that you alter.

Script mods can range from just having all islands open at the start to having all-new missions - they change how the game works and what you do in it, rather than just the look and feel of things. However, if you install a script mod - that is a modification to the main.scm file - you will not be able to use existing savegames, and any savegames you make whilst using that edited .scm can not be used on a different/default installation. The main.scm won't function with savegames from other main.scms because it generates different function IDs, which confuses it - thus the instant crash is usually imminent.

Installing Mods

There are a number of ways you can install mods. The first is manually (using the dffs and txds), and another is using GGMM (GTA Garage Mod Manager) which is an quicker way to install mods

Manually Installing a car into San Andreas PC v1

This is the most common and popular type of modding, for one of the most popular games of all time.

The basic steps are as follows:

Download and extract the mod, replace the DFF and TXD into gta3.img (If backing up, rename the files you are replacing in gta3.img first, for example, from dumper.dff to dumper_old.dff), replace the lines in handling.cfg, carcols.dat, default.ide, vehicles.ide and carmods.dat (If such replacement files/lines are included in the mod), run the game and test the mod.

So...

1. Extract the mod file(s) to a folder...

2. Open GTA3.IMG with IMG Tool 2, and find the file you want to replace. Rename it for backup.

3. Use the Command/Add option and add the file you extracted in Step 1 to gta3.img.

If the mod has other files such as handling.cfg, carmods.dat, etc...you can simply add those files, but if have previously modified the files then you will need to only replace the required line or your other mods won't work. Open the files in your San Andreas/data folder with Notepad. Replace the lines. If you want to back up the files, copy the one you want to backup to your desktop, rename the one in the data folder (like handlingold.cfg) and move the one on your desktop back to the data folder) Use the regular one for mods.

4. Remember to backup the .dat, .cfg, and .ide files if they need modded.

5. Copy the lines to the files in the data folder.

Using GGMM to install a car mod into SA PC v1

[help needed for this]

Other ways to install mods

[help needed for this]

So, can members please reply with any additions and edits you think should be made, thanks

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Is it dangerous to mod my game?

Installing mods does not damage your game, unless you do something wrong. So long as your follow the instructions, and have a basic idea of what it is you're actually doing, you are unlikely to make a mistake. If you do make a mistake, you could either restore a backup (if you made one) or reinstall your game. Reinstalling your game does not get rid of your saved games, they are stored in 'My Documents'. For this reason, it is best to keep a backup of every file you edit or replace. The only file that is usually too big to backup is gta3.img - you should just backup every .dff or .txd inside gta3.img that you backup.

Perhaps you should add that script mods can corrupt your savegame. You have to start a new game for every new script mod you use (main.scm and script.img).

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Thanks - added :)

Also, if anybody actually knows why scms won't allow you to restore a savegame from a differently modded (or unmodded) scm file, please let me know. Thanks STM.

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hey, i have GTASA Version 2. in the message you said that if you have V2 that you can downgrade to V1... Please send me a message or email on how to do this. [email protected]

Thanks

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hey, i have GTASA Version 2. in the message you said that if you have V2 that you can downgrade to V1... Please send me a message or email on how to do this. [email protected]

Thanks

I wish someone could help me by writing one sentence in reply:

No problem with the img tool as long as I have a new file to replace what I've extracted. But what about moving img files from within the GTA3.img file itself? If I wanted to put Elvis in as a gang member :D what would I do?

Find Elvis' id # .. easy, remove .. easy, replace? Now where do I go? All I get is a browser.

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i too have version 2 and it wonr let me mod my game when i go 2 load or start new game it hets halfway then freezes so how would or do you downgrade it???

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i too have version 2 and it wonr let me mod my game when i go 2 load or start new game it hets halfway then freezes so how would or do you downgrade it???

Same Here !, i have Version 2, how do you downgrade, where do you download it from ?

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someone needs to gather all the main files in the dat and so on and then ask if people want it, i got a mod 1yr ago for v1 b4 it broke and that had all the files in it so that if it broke u can just paste that folder in and away u go.

PM me if you have these files for people to use!!!

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i did everything they told me to do i think but it still dosn't work it always stops halfway when i load the game so can anyone help me my email [email protected] THANK you :D

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hey, i have GTASA Version 2. in the message you said that if you have V2 that you can downgrade to V1... Please send me a message or email on how to do this. [email protected]

Thanks

I need to know if your question was ever answered as I am having the same issue. Please help me if you can [email protected]

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I need to know if your question was ever answered as I am having the same issue. Please help me if you can [email protected]

I NEED A DOWNGRADE PLEASE!!

Can anyone send me !! my email is [email protected] !! HELP please

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Hmph, this is supossed to be a GTASA xbox/ps2 mod post, but so far i only saw PC info.

Actually the Xbox v1 has the exact same file estructure of the PC v1 except for the

default.xbe instead of GTA San Andreas.exe, if u want to get the files of your xbox v to

your PC [so u can mod], this is how to:

1:

Of course u have a modded Xbox [otherwise this is not your place i guess]

There is an app called DVD2XBOX for the ... YEAH xbox [sorry PS2 dudes, I sold my PS2],

download that and FTP it into ur xbox hd, or if u already have it

copy ur GTA SA game to ur xbox hd.

Now use a FTP program [FlasFXP is the best] and transfer the files into a directory

to your PC. [they're usually in XX://Games where XX is the app partition of your xbox hd]

2:

Of course if u want to mod u have a DVD+-R backup of your original GTA SA or u can make one of it.

Using alcohol 120% select Image Creation Assistant

Select a name and a location [it really doesnt matter where u put it or how u name it] and start

Once ur done with that use MagicIso to extract the content of the file just created to any folder u may like

[No need for a Dual-Layer DVD-+R a normal DVD-+R does fine, +- means DVD-R or DVD+R

some times ppl get confused]

Now u end up with a file estructure that has a GTA3.img handling.cfg etc...

u can mod things exactly like u do in the PC v. the only question i have

is ¿Can i get PCv Cars to work on the Xbox V? [since all the files are exactly the same as the PC v]

www.gtaxboxmods.com is a great site with XBOX mods hmph LOL

but the site has being down for some time now, thats why i ask that

question.

anyway imma try to put some PC v cars on the Xbox V, any news ill post them.

[aa one last thing, u dont need to burn everything again if u just added a new mod

just transfer the modded files over the ones on your xbox hd with a FTP program,

or if u really want to get it on DVD, craxtion team has an excelent tool to create

Xbox.DVD Isos, now go check it out] :coolthumbup:

[aaa another last thing... sorry my english sux hahahaha] :D

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yep

The Downgrader

Hi can you help..I downloaded both patches but I get the error message :

This program cannot patch the installed version of san andreas because of the folowing reason:

C:\Program Files\Rockstar Games\GTA San Andreas\gta_sa.exe:unknown version.

or "this file contains invalid data"

I bought my version a couple of weeks ago new in the box so i assume its version 2 ...How can I tell ? is there another way to down grade ?? thanks

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will this really work because i dont want to spend 50 minutes re installing the game agen.

Edited by VICE CITY
1 person likes this

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I don't think so. And about reinstalling.

It only replaces some files I think. And if you bought your san an from a little store you might still have V1

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I too have recently purchased the second version, and i canot seem to install any kind of customized vehicles.nar could i use the CAMERA HACK. the only thing that worked for me was the MAP EDITOR. Somebody please reply.

Edited by Timmy Vermicceli

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Hi,

I have SA V2 but used the downgrader from slayers sig and installed a mod exetly how it was told in the readme (it's an mod from JVT) halfway the loading screen i get an error message but i don't know what it says because the GTA screen is over it does anyone knows how to fix this :pissedred::pissedred:

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referring to that you said about changing the main.scm and that all savegames won't work anymore

Well I did, I didn't know of this, but I figured out myself that if I change a vehicle in one mission it will be much easier to do (I know sounds like a cheat, but I was really stuck). Enough of this, I wanted to say that all the savegames was function properly, I didn't noticed any glitches or bugs.

EDIT: Now I noticed that if I ADD some lines to script then it really becames unuseable by previous savegames(I can play but I wont see any difference :cry: ) but If I start a new game, then it(the my modification) will be working.

So isn't there any way to add new stuff, but still be able to use with previous savegames???

Edited by vincister

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BUMP - lets see if we can finish this thing off - its still useful.

referring to that you said about changing the main.scm and that all savegames won't work anymore

Well I did, I didn't know of this, but I figured out myself that if I change a vehicle in one mission it will be much easier to do (I know sounds like a cheat, but I was really stuck). Enough of this, I wanted to say that all the savegames was function properly, I didn't noticed any glitches or bugs.

EDIT: Now I noticed that if I ADD some lines to script then it really becames unuseable by previous savegames(I can play but I wont see any difference :cry: ) but If I start a new game, then it(the my modification) will be working.

So isn't there any way to add new stuff, but still be able to use with previous savegames???

Okay, so changing lines won't stop it working, but most main.scm script mods are pretty heavy - eg new missions - which is a lot more than simply changing words.

The idea behind it I suppose is that if you made totally new missions, an original-version savegame would be useless. Perhaps it is even to stop you using savegames from previous games (eg GTAVC)

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