32bit Graphics Development Documentation
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This article or section is outdated. Some of its content may no longer be accurate due to changes in the latest release. Please update this article.
References outdated forum threads etc. The 32bpp project referred to in this section is, as of 2017, dead

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32bit Graphics Documentation: Standards and Suggestions for Artists

Camera position, Lighting and More

We have custom template files with among other things camera position and lighting specs preset available for (software) Blender, 3ds Max 3D Studio Max and 3D Lightwave. Ben Robbins has made a 3DSMax template and Aracirion a Lightwave template. You can pm them for details on each. For Blender, download version F, the new contrast version. Before using them, please read through the short blurbs below.

The template files contains correct lighting, camera position, resolution etc. 1 Blender Unit equals 1 metre. There are templates for different sizes of buildings. If you need more sizes, or if anything is not clear or you want to comment on anything, please join the discussion in the "new lighting for buildings" thread on tt-forums.


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In maximum zoom level one square equals 12,5 m x 12,5 m equals 64px across. This is the basic unit for railway tracks and roads. As the buildings in the original Transport Tycoon look as if they are about 25 m x 25 m per square, many new buildings will occupy 2 x 2 new 12,5 m squares. For scale comparison Ben Robbins modelled Ottis, a real-size human.

The sizes for a single square building.
If you work with 3D Studio Max, you have a semi-transparent square grid on the ground in the Perspective viewport. It is 140x140 units big on its default settings. Using these measurements, if we assume this ground raster to represent one Transport Tycoon square, we can assume that a human being of two meters tall would take up 22,4 units. Use this to scale your building, prop or vehicle. If you create a 2x2 building, just divide the appropriate figures by 2. This way, when all buildings will come together, one large building will not look like a miniature when compared to a supposedly small building. If you want the home grid to have a different size, go to Customize, and in the Grid and Snap Settings dialogue, go to Home Grid tab.


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For every material you create, in the shaders tab, you are advised to change the Amb parameter (0.5 by default) to match the Ref parameter (1 by default). You always have to modify Ref and Amb together. It has been decided that Amb should always have the same value as Ref, because a material should reflect light from the sun or other light sources the same way it reflects light from the environment (ambient light). Hence, for maximum realism, the values should be the same. Naturally this is not a strict rule, you do have artistic freedom to deviate from this.

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The template file archive contains a file named official_materials.blend. It contains some materials which you will need often, and which should look the same in different objects, like pavement for example. Put this file in a location where it can stay. When you have built a model and want to use an official material, link the material rather than just append it. For additional instructions, see Using Official Materials.

Minimize render time

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Rendering can be quite slow. To reduce time it takes to render for previews, reduce the Samples value under Ambient Occlusion.

Guides and tutorials

Automating Ground Sprites - A tutorial showing artists how to create a set of 85+ ground sprites in about 30 mins. Includes many automated files.
32bpp Graphics with Extra_Zoom - A tutorial on how to create 32bpp graphics with extra zoom.
3d max tutorial - Ship creating
3d max tutorial - Plane creating


File Repository a public file repository for the 32bit Graphics Development.
32bit automated nightly bundle A nightly compilation of released sprites.
Materials For now, this page contains some image maps. Eventually, it should contain blender materials.
Props This page contains small props like trees and cars.
Stock.xchng Huge photo library (including useful textures)
BurningWell.org Photo library with usefull textures (Public Domain).
Note that the following have incompatible licenses for distribution with OpenTTD, and should not be used if you want your graphics included in OpenGFX or similar
CgTextures.com external texture library. Please read the FAQ for more details on their licence.
Shadowhouse Creations external texture library of Jerry Jones "skeletalmess". Please read his Terms of Use as you cannot distribute his textures along with your artwork. Instead a link to his webpage and proper credit should be provided.
Original TTD graphics - Showing the Original TTD graphics and their real counterparts (Notice: heavily copyrighted by Chris Sawyer, for reference only).

Tools and Documentation

PNGCodec Information about the tool you need to codec the PNG's for use in the game
32bit Graphics Licensing Listing of artists who have issued a blanket license on their contributions
32bit standard tar format Description of the 32bit standard tar release format
Tile version table (outdated) A table showing the required/desired versions of each object.
Conversions table for Ground sprites (outdated) This list is helpful for those wishing to use the automated sprites in the old or new graphics format.
Rendered Angles table (outdated) This page has tables containing the angles of renders in relation to their render number, useful for coders.

Other needs to rearranged

ngPlant - Open Source plant modeling package
Plant making tutorial using ngPlant and other software
Playing with 32 bpp graphics