Modding:Getting Started with BG3 Modding

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Are you excited about becoming a Baldur's Gate 3 modder, but have absolutely no idea where to start? Hopefully this article can point you in the right direction.

What do I need to begin?[edit | edit source]

You’re gonna need some tools in order to start modding. Make sure you download the following, as they’re basically mandatory for modding:

  • BG3 Multitool by ShinyHobo
    • The multitool is an awesome tool that provides several important functions, chief among them the ability to search the game files, and to pack your mod into a format ready to be imported into BG3MM.
  • Lslib by Norbyte
  • Blender (version 3.6 recommended)
    • This is needed only if you plan to do any kind of mesh editing (hair, heads, clothes, weapons, etc.)
    • Collada/GR2 import/export Blender plugin by Norbyte
      • For importing/exporting .GR2 files, which BG3 uses

What mods are best to start with?[edit | edit source]

So you've found the tools, tutorials, samples/templates that you want to use. But you're wondering if there are easier mod projects that are better to start with in order to get used to the tools and file formats.

If you’re wanting to create Character Creation (CC) mods, creating your own makeup/tattoo/highlights/greying colours is a great place to start. It can help you get used to some of the formats the files are in without getting overwhelmed. If equipment is more your interest, maybe try making a simple magic ring mod.

But remember: just because others start at a certain place doesn't mean you have to, and try not to compare yourself to others on how quickly you pick things up. We all learn and work at our own pace. Take things at the speed you’re comfortable with, and don’t forget to have fun!

Modding Sites[edit | edit source]

If you are making your mod to share with others, pick the site(s) you want to share them on.

Permissions[edit | edit source]

When it comes to making mods, you can assign what your permissions are for your mods. This also means you have to read other modders permissions as well if you want to use any of their edited/custom assets for your own mods. This includes even the unique identifier (UUID) for that asset as it is intended to interact with existing user-submitted content.

So what are permissions? Simply put: they are the rules you and other modders put around the custom assets in your mods. Such as heavily edited or made-from-scratch textures, heads, outfits, vfx and such. Like whether you want someone to be able to take your mod, make some edits to it, and then upload it as their own mod.

No one owns vanilla assets and they cannot be claimed by anyone. So multiple mods using the same assets can exist, such as multiple mods existing that add the same NPC hairs. If the asset is edited, that is where permissions generally come in.

Ask for permission before using assets from another mod or making a patch for a mod. It is common courtesy to ask if you can make a patch for someone else's mod or asking if you can add assets from one mod to another.

  • It makes the modder aware so any troubleshooting needed can be easier to do.
  • Most modders will say yes if they aren't already making patches themselves.

Modders also have every right to say no when asked if their assets can be used. Respect their wishes.

So always ask for permission, if the modder says no, this does not mean you can then go ahead and use their assets. It means stop what you're doing and find other assets you can work with.

  • Most modders are fine for personal use edits, but this means no uploading their assets to other sites/discord servers and such. If in doubt, ask!

Example of Permissions[edit | edit source]

Say you find a head mod you like, and you want to use it as a base to create your own head:

  • Due to being an edited mesh, you have to get permission of the mod author to use the mesh as a base for your own edits. Yes, even if the original asset they edited came from the game.
    • If the face itself isn't edited, but the ears have been heavily edited, then it would in this case be the ears you need to get permission to use.

Nexusmods[edit | edit source]

So you want to release on nexusmods, then you will want to know how permissions work on there.

Nexusmods copyright and you

Nexusmods Submission Guidelines

Other Modders Permissions[edit | edit source]

If wanting to search for other modders permissions they can be found on the main page of their mod under Permissions and Credits. You will find:

  • Other user's assets -
    • Whether the assets in the mod/files belong to the author, or are from free-to-use modder's resources
  • Upload permission -
    • Whether you are or not allowed to upload the mod/file to other sites
  • Modification permission -
    • Whether you must get permission from the modder before you are allowed to modify the files
  • Conversion permission -
    • Whether you are or not allowed to convert the file to work on other games
  • Asset use permission -
    • Whether you must get permission from the modder before you are allowed to use any of the assets in the mod

Your Permissions[edit | edit source]

If creating a mod the Permissions tab is the fourth tab. You will find questions such as:

  • Give permission for users to upload my files on other sites?
    • Whether you give permission for others to upload your files/mods to other sites
  • Give permission for users to convert my mod to work in other games?
    • Whether you give permission for others to convert your assets to other games
  • Give permission for users to modify my file; including releasing bug fixes or improving on the features my file adds to the game, and upload it as a separate file?
    • Whether you give others permission to modify your files, including if its a bug fix or an improvement.
  • Give permission for users to use assets contained in my files in their own files?
    • Whether you give others permissions to use your assets in their own mods.

If you use an edited asset from another modder without permission, you risk your mod or at the very least the assets used being requested to be pulled before the mod can go live again by nexusmods.