Using S3TC Textures

From UnrealAdminWiki

Please add everything you know about s3tc usage here :) .

Refer to the Introduction for information on how to use the wiki.


What are s3tc Textures ?

S3TC textures are alternative high resolution textures that can be found on CD2 of the GOTY edition of UT. They were originally developed to exploit the capability of S3 cards of the time to handle a new compressed format that has little impact on performance.

Why should I use them ?

UT can be tweaked to obtain some increase in graphical quality. However, the textures themselves stay unaltered and may seem blurry by today's standards. The s3tc textures offer more detail and replace some of the textures to create an enhanced picture.

What are the downsides ?

There are a few downsides to using these :

  • You may encounter the sliding player effect on some servers where other players slide around seemingly stuck in a pose.
  • Use of s3tc textures affects demo recording. Basically to watch an demo recorded on a client using s3tc textures you should add the s3tc textures yourself.
  • Not all textures have been enhanced, so you will only see a change in maps such as DM-Codex, DM-Curse DM-Phobos and others.

How do I install these on my copy of UT ?

Read this entire document first. Use this at your own risk! This works best using a new installation of UT that has been patched up to UT patch version 436 first. This document explains how to successfully use the S3TC high resolution textures that come on UT CD #2 whether you have already installed the UT CD #2 (textures) or not. (A link is provided below so you can download them if needed) These instructions are only for "player" installations ONLY and ABSOLUTELY NOT for server-side use! This is only for use with the specific OpenGL Renderer mentioned below though later versions of it may work as well. You must follow these directions exactly or they won't work! Don't try to take shortcuts! Be aware that some Anti-Cheat programs may not allow you to connect to the server if you use S3TC textures. Print this now if you can!

I have listed two versions of directions here. The version you will need will depend on your current UT installation status. Only use the version that matches your current UT installation. Choose the version that describes your current UT installation status:

Version #1 description:

You have installed UT but you have not installed the (high resolution S3TC) textures from UT CD #2 yet and you have the UT CD #2 and you want to use the high resolution S3TC that are on it. (A link is provided below so you can download them if needed)


Version #2 desription:

You installed UT and you have also already installed the (high resolution S3TC) textures from UT CD #2 and are now needing to fix the sliding player/bot issue you see when you play on line. (Directions for version #2 is the last paragraph at the very bottom of this document).

Follow these directions if you fall into the Version #1 description:

Make sure that your UT installation is patched up to the 436 patch and if not, patch it up to version 4.36! Make a back-up copy of your entire current UnrealTournament\Textures folder. Do not touch this back up copy again unless I tell you to use it to restore your installation back to your original configuration.

Go to your UnrealTournament\Textures folder and move out these 3 files: SkyBox.utx, City.utx, and ShaneSky.utx to a temporary folder that is anywhere but not your Back-Up Textures folder.

Install the second CD textures choosing to overwrite all of the originals but be aware that they take up around 500mb of space so be sure you have room on your drive before proceeding. Once that is done go into your UnrealTournament\Textures folder and move these 6 skin textures (Female1Skins.utx, Female2Skins.utx, Male1Skins.utx, Male2Skins.utx, Male3Skins.utx, and SkTrooperSkins.utx) to the temporary folder with the other 3 files from above.

Install the S3TC patch by copying it (s3fix.exe - into your texture folder and launching it. Wait for it to finish and close. Now go get all of the files you copied into your temporary folder and put them back into your texture folder choosing to overwrite the ones you just installed from the second CD.

Now we need to configure UT to use the specific OpenGL renderer mentioned above as your renderer by doing the following:

1.  Go to your UnrealTournament\System folder.
2.  Rename the file called OpenGLDrv.dll to OpenGLDrvOriginal.dll
3.  Open your web-browser and paste in this link then hit enter to download the file you'll need to your computer: 
4.  Unzip the file and copy the OpenGLDrv.dll file to your UnrealTournament\System folder.
5.  Start the game and from the UT Desktop select "Options"
6.  Now select "Preferences" 
7.  On the Video tab, select the Video Driver "Change" button.
8.  A “Change Video Driver” option window will open. Select “Yes”
9.  The “Unreal Tournament Video Configuration” window will open. Note your what your current renderer is. Click the radius for “Show all devices”

10. Select “OpenGL Support” so that it is highlighted in blue. 11. Select “Next” 12. Select “Next” again. 13. Select “Run"

Now you are using the OpenGL renderer but you still need to enable the S3TC functionality by doing the following: You enable them from within the game. Start a practice session and then hit the tilde key (~), and then type PREFERENCES. On the menu that opens select Renderers and then OpenGL Support. Now find the line that says "USES3TC = False" and change it to True. Save it and then close everything and reboot. Yes, I said reboot as in restart your computer. Restart the game.

Try out the new textures by connecting to a multiplayer game on line. If everyone is moving around properly then you are successful! If you see what looks like frozen ice skating players moving around then this did not work for you. If it did not work then you need to go back to your original configuration by doing the following:

1. Copy the "Back-Up Textures" folder right back over your current Textures folder. 2. Start the game and from the UT Desktop select "Options" 3. Select "Preferences" 4. On the Video tab, select the Video Driver "Change" button. 5. A “Change Video Driver” option window will open. Select “Yes” 6. The “Unreal Tournament Video Configuration” window will open. 7. Select “D3D” or whatever your original renderer was so that it is highlighted in blue. 8. Select “Next” 9. Select “Next” again. 10. Select “Run" and that will almost restore you back to your original configration.

Go back into your UnrealTournament\System folder and delete the file named OpenGLDrv.dll and then rename the file OpenGLDrvOriginal.dll back to OpenGLDrv.dll and you will be back to your original configuration once you reboot one last time.

Hopefully, this option/fix did not fail and you are now enjoying the S3TC high resolution textures with possibly a higher framerate and a more colorful and more crisp video display.

Please send questions or comments to me at: [email protected] or visit my forum at

Final Note: This OpenGL driver that I am linking to has a "Copyright 2002-2006" and belongs to Chris Dohnal. The page that this OpenGL driver I used came from is:

I take no credit for his modified OpenGL driver and if I knew who actually created the s3fix.exe file that this readme is attached to I would update this file to reflect that person's name so that they got their just due credit. Nice work by all entities for the driver and the fix!

I have heard many people mention over the years that the S3TC textures did not come on/with many versions of UnrealTournament. For this reason I have decided to host the textures until I get official word from Epic Games not to. This is not a copy of the entire contents of UT CD #2 but it is all of the textures from the Textures folder. These textures can be downloaded from this link here:

Follow these directions if you fall into the Version #2 catagory:

If you have already installed the high resolution S3TC textures from the UT CD #2 and then went online to play you may have noticed that all of the other players and bots moved without any animation. They looked like frozen players or bots sliding around like they were ice skating statues sliding on one foot while there head was looking down the whole time. When a bot or player was fragged, a frozen image of them stayed where they died but was standing up and no longer moved or took damage. This confusion you since you would attack them thinking they were actual players that were standing still but no damage happened and they never fall down or fade away. This document explains how to install the high resolution S3TC textures again and fix it so that this frozen skating player/bot syndrome doesn't happen to you anymore. Unfortunately, If this doesn't work for you then you will most likely need to reinstall UT from the ground up. Insert your UT CD #1 and select cancel if it tries to install. Open UT CD #1 and copy the folder called "Textures" over your current copy of the Textures folder in your UnrealTournament folder. Now follow all of the directions for Version #1 description back at the top of this page.

How do I properly set up a server to use these ?

Servers should have the CD1 Textures installed, if they have CD2 or the reduced 'Server only' textures it will cause problems. The server should also run smoother for clients with the CD1 textures installed.


  • I have installed s3tc on my UT but when I connect to a server I am stuck and the text in the chatbox is white.
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  • Using S3TC Textures