Insurgency: Sandstorm

Insurgency: Sandstorm

Create and share custom maps, gamemodes and mutators for Insurgency: Sandstorm.

Learn more and find the game on Steam, Homepage, New World Interactive, Community Discord.

Weapon Skinning (Incoherent Guide)

This is a quick (non-specific) guide on how to make your own weapon skin. The skins created will only work under a loadout mutator mod that can only be used in the game through local play or a community server that's using it. Written for a friend. Posting it here if this will somehow help someone (unlikely lol). So, sorry beforehand but this guide will be poorly written quickly by a drunk illiterate that's no way qualified to be a modder or a graphic designer, yours truly, me.


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Getting started

To make the skin, there are basically two tools you gonna need, those are:

  • Insurgency Sandstorm's Mod Tools & Editor, and
  • An image editor to edit Targa images (.TGA)

Insurgency Sandstorm SDK is available here.
And on how you will skin the guns with the image editor it's really up to you really, whether it's just a simple 2D skinning with GIMP for example or if you want to edit it in 3D way you could use Blender as well.
Both GIMP and Blender are free, you can get GIMP here and Blender here.

Weapon skin blueprint

You can see an example on how the game's DLC weapon skin upgrades work on the editor as a solid reference here:
DLC skin blueprints
Please just use this since as a reference since I'm pretty sure this guide will miss one or two things.

To make our own, firstly, create a weapon skin upgrade blueprint:
Right click on the content browser > Create basic asset > Blueprint class
When picking the parent class, personally I like to use the WeaponSkinComponent as the parent
Pick parent class pop-up
There you have it, a new blueprint for weapon skin.
New skin blueprint
And for example I'll skin the AUG since personally I think it's the easiest gun to skin.
The blueprint will be referenced by others on the editor I like to name it in the same format as well, so here goes BP_UG_Skin_AUG_Example.
Empty skin blueprint
Things that you'll need to work on that blueprints are basically just setting up the weapon material overwrite parameters and it's weapon upgrade description parameters.

On the material overwrite parameters, you need to assign which texture slots on which materials goes into. Both for the first person and the third person model. The weapon's skeletal mesh should show you that, they are located on Content\Animated\Weapons.
This is AUG's (Content\Animated\Weapons\Rifle\AUG) for example:
AUG skeletal mesh
And as you can see, in both first person and third person model AUG only has one material element in slot 0. So then later you can adjust the material overwrite parameters for the AUG this way:
Weapon skin material override tab
Weapon index material overwrite 1P for the first person model, assigning it's slot to 0 carrying the 1P weapon skin material.
Weapon index material overwrite 3P for the third person model, assigning it's slot to 0 carrying the 3P weapon skin material
And also reference it's original material as a fallback mesh material as well, that are located in the same folder as the weapon's skeletal mesh.

And for the replacement materials, I forgot to add that you need to make them first, simply by copy and pasting both 1P and 3P original materials into your mod folder.
Copy pasted material instances
Editing them will be covered in the next part.

Getting back to the weapon blueprint, for the weapon upgrade parameters you will need to name the skin, it's description, set it's supply point price, set it's upgrade slot to aesthetic, and set what weapon it's intended for.
Blueprint weapon upgrade tabs
That should be all for the skin blueprint, at least that's what I've done to my mod and it worked well surprisingly enough.

Texture editing

Back on the copy pasted weapon material, you can replace three inputs of albedo map, normal map, and it's material map.
If you want to keep the mod size simple it's usually enough to just replace the albedo map while retaining the default normal and material map.

To export the default albedo map for editing, go back to the folder where the weapon material located, and go inside texture folder under it (or just click the magnifying glass icon under the default albedo input).

Right click on the albedo map > Asset actions > Export...
It will then export the texture as a targa (.TGA) file.

If you want to edit the skin in 2D way with GIMP for example, just open it with GIMP then do your own magic on it. I can't teach graphic design so I can't teach shit for you.
Tips? Uhhhhh well you can just play with hue shifting or convert it to black and white to convert tan guns to black, that's what I've done.
If you want to edit the skin in 3D way with Blender for example, you will need to export the gun's 3D model.
Right click on the albedo map > Asset actions > Export...
It will then export the weapon 3D model as a filmbox (.FBX) file.
Again, can't teach you how but there's this cool video on how to do texture painting in Blender:

After you've done editing the textures(s), reference them into your own material files.

Then reference this material in your weapon skin blueprint.

If you want to make certain parts of the gun glows in the dark, check the Welrod, it has an emissive map for it's sights, use that as a reference I guess.


After you've successfully created your weapon skin upgrade blueprint you will need to include it as a usable upgrade. For mine I've included it on my loadout replacement mutator, sorry but I won't be including on how to do that in this guide.

Vanilla mutators like BoltActionsOnly or CompetitiveLoadouts might help as a reference on how to work on a loadout mutator though. They are located in Content\Game\Mutators on the editor.

Other than GIMP and Blender, my friends who've done weapon skinning for our mod used Photoshop and Substance.

Go wild with your imagination, really.


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nop_from_insurgency @nop-from-insurgency

Danke, friend!

WintorOperator @wintoroperator