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Are there any guides/recources to making custom UI/item icons that look similar or exactly the same as vanilla?

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Thinking—big emphasis on the thinking—about making my first actual modlet with xml and everything, but I'm not sure of actually two things right now: how to make the icons and make them look like Vanilla 7 Days (or, again, similar enough) item icons, and also how to grab textures from the game itself. I can list off the blocks I need textures for. I tried to figure out how to use UBAE but I couldn't to save my life, even with tutorials 😅


(Oh, and if anyone knows, what's TFP's policy on using existing vanilla assets in completely free mods? If I have to I can remake all the textures I need from scratch but if I don't have to that'd be cool lol)

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I'll try to help a little of what I can:

23 hours ago, vergilsparda said:

how to make the icons and make them look like Vanilla 7 Days (or, again, similar enough) item icons

- Icons need to be 116x80, and .png format

- To make them look "correct" takes some work, but generally if you make a transparent background, and pay attention to the "size" of the image inside the icon boundary, it will look ok. Meaning: the image in the icon doesn't touch the edges of the icon. just pay attention to the image scaling of the vanilla icon items

- I think you may have issues making the icons look "perfect" like the game as they're quite a bit of variation in the games icons. As an example, I think I read on these forums that the "books" are actually art someone made (like a large drawing/painting) and they then photographed it. other things look like they were just drawn (like clothes).  Maybe there is a "filter" or process they run images through to make it look "right" but I have not heard of any.

- Personally, I used Gimp ( free) and then downloaded images that looked "easy to crop out" (meaning well defined borders of the item I wanted aganst a solid background, or at least a very solid color boundary), cropped images out, scaled them down, then copied them as a new layer into an 116x80 image with a transparent layer, then exported them into 1 ,png image.  it can be a lot of work to learn how to do all this, but once you get used to Gimp (or whatever image editor you want to use) it goes faster.  the longest part is trying to find a good image and then extract the image out. Personally I try to get images off of "free image" sites, just to not worry about stealing work, and I attribute where I got it from in personal files, in case anyone wants to know the source I can post them or just put them in the mod.

- Here's a mod I made that does not have any client icons, just makes a bunch of recipes and new items: https://7daystodiemods.com/sous-chef-of-the-apocalypse/

because there's no new icons (just recoloring vanilla ones), its "server side safe". Then, I made a second mod that adds some text to the end of the modded folder so it sorts alphabetically to load "after" the first one: https://7daystodiemods.com/sous-chef-of-the-apocalypse-client-icons/, that is an example of how to "replace" the icons in a mod that's already loaded (and thus is not server side safe). Anyway, most people (or anyone?) I've seen have not done this but it illustrates a bare mimimum mod to just replace icons with custom ones. and shows the format and folder structure where icons go in a mod.  If you look at the icons in my mod (in game and in an image editor) you;ll see how teh blueberry muffin, the mushrooms, the "turkish delight" and the two "scraps" icons don't look good compared to the others, because of coloring and (for the muffin) the size is too big (not enough border between the muffin and the sides), and the "turkish delight" just kinda has no definition and looks like a blob.  I didn't fix them because I was tired of making icons ;). All of them are a little "too big" as well (I should shrink them a little more) but I literally just cropped images of all sizes and scaled them down to fit and it looks "good enough" probably, if you just want to get something working. Notice for the "scraps" icons I just recolored the "broken glass" vanilla icon.  you can recolor vanilla icons without making a new icon (its an XML attribute you can use) but I couldn't recolor to these colors so I did it manually and made "new" icons.  Also notice I screwed up and some icons are not 116x80, but they work in game ok enough (I need to fix that too)


I suggest finding some small mods that have custom icons (and not much else) and just figure out how to make a small mod with custom icons. One I maintain is: https://7daystodiemods.com/awww-nuts/ that adds "nuts and bolts" item (with custom icon) that's needed to craft and repair vanilla items.


- Dont use icon images of things that are "super bright" *unless* its "techy" or something.  like, having a bright neon red apple does not look like the game looks.  most of the colors are kinda muted BUT if its something like a white plastic or ceramic it looks ok.

- Dont make icon images too dark, as its hard to see details. The game UI is kinda dark/greyish and the icon locations have a semitransparent background, so anything "black" or dark grey/super dark red gets washed out.


23 hours ago, vergilsparda said:

how to grab textures from the game itself.


This contains more than you're asking for, but some comments indicate tools to use to extract things from the game. Poke around these forums and you'll find some answers likely for how people have done things like this: https://community.7daystodie.com/forum/22-game-modification/


23 hours ago, vergilsparda said:

I can list off the blocks I need textures for

I'm not sure if the block textures are as easy to export as the game icons (I've never messed with blocks much), but it should be doable, but you may need Unity  (and the proper version for the game version you have loaded) and some know-how to get to these textures.


23 hours ago, vergilsparda said:

I tried to figure out how to use UBAE

I think UBAE has been abandoned and may not work anymore for newer versions of Unity built games (probably broke when 7D2D version a19 came out?).  that's the last I hard awhile ago, I may be wrong.


23 hours ago, vergilsparda said:

FP's policy on using existing vanilla assets in completely free mods


There's this link in the main Modding forum here, that's pinned at the top. Basically, as long as its "freely available" and you're not making money from it in any way, its OK to use (I believe).



 Its optional, but its nice if when your mod(s) are completed and working you post a link to your mod in a custom thread in the Mods section (with some explanation/screenshots) for others to download here: https://community.7daystodie.com/forum/27-mods/ .  If you do this, it will be picked up automatically (I believe, like in a day?) and loaded into https://7daystodiemods.com.  Many modders in Mods have a page they post that they edit and maintain maintain dedicated to just the mods they have made, and to provide some support if there are bugs. If you want you can also post your completed mod link here:


Lastly: Here's a good place to start learning how to make XML mods





Edited by doughphunghus (see edit history)
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