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External Tools

Every modder has individual preferences which programs he likes to use for modding. Here are some recommendations and hints on tools that are often used in the community. The list below is not exclusive, there are many other compatible programs.


The various text based resouce types can be edited with almost any text editor. This reaches from Microsoft Editor to integrated integrated development environments like Eclipse. Two commonly used text editors are:

  • Notepad++ is a free text editor for Microsoft Windows. It can open multiple tabs in several windows and has builtin Lua syntax highlighting. It can be downloaded for free at
  • Visual Studio Code is another free text editor that runs under Linux as well. Like Notepad++ it features syntax highlighting but it can be extended for syntax completition too. It can be downloaded for free at

3D Modelling

Like with the text editors, there are plenty of available software solutions for 3D modelling.

  • Blender is a free allround software for 3D modelling, animation, … It supports bone animations too and bake texture maps like for ambient occlusion. With some limitations, models exported as FBX may be imported with the model editor. Blender can be downloaded at
  • Modo is a payware 3D modelling software by Foundry. It's the software used by Urban Games to develop the content for Transport Fever 2. The FBX import into the model editor is suited for FBX files exported by Modo. See details about Modo on
  • 3ds Max is a payware 3D modelling software by Autodesk. See for more information.
  • Maya is the other payware 3D modelling software by Autodesk. See for more information.
  • Cinema4D is a payware 3D modelling software by Maxon. See for more information.

As the payware tools have very expensive licenses, it's not recommended to invest in them if you are not an advanced user. Students may get a discount or free license though as long as they do not use the software for professional and commercial projects.

There are other tools that are used regularily. These have some problems regarding the compatibility to Transport Fever 2 that are described below:

  • Sketchup is a 3D modelling software that many prefer because of its ease of use. However, it does not offer the possibility to map the 3D model itself, so it is not possible to import it directly into Transport Fever 2. The models must first be mapped in another program. In addition, cylindrical objects are often exported very finely, so that the models have high tris numbers.
  • Solidworks and similar parametrized CAD modelling tools are especially popular with people in the CAD field. They offer the possibility to create systematic models. However, they have the same problems as Sketchup, i.e. it is usually not possible to map the model and curves are implemented very finely.


Beside the modelling tools, there are various texturing tools. These have different advantages and disadvantages and many artists stick to tools they are familiar with.

  • GIMP is a freeware image editing software that is commonly used. It is capable of loading some photoshop files too. You can find it on
  • Paint.NET is a freeware image editing software that originally started as an alternative to the classical Microsoft Paint. It can be downloaded at
  • Paint Shop Pro is a payware software by Corel. It can be bought with a perpetual license at
  • Photoshop is a payware software for professional 2D artists by Adobe. It is available as part of the Adobe Creative Cloud or seperate but not with a perpetual license. Find more information about Photoshop at
  • Substance Painter is a payware software for professional 3D artists originally developed by Allegorithmic and now maintained and developed further by Adobe. In contrast to the software above, the textures can be painted directly on the 3D model. Interactive texture materials can be used with lots of modifiers to accomodate various needs. Get more information at A perpetual lifetime license can be bought on Steam.

DDS Export

To export DDS files, a plugin or standalone program might be needed. Here is a list of common ones. Be aware that their internal compression algorithms may differ resulting in slightly different output.

Custom Tools for Transport Fever 2

There are fanmade tools available that support the development of mods for Transport Fever 2. Some common ones are:

  • The TPF1 –> TPF2 Konverter by EAT1963 is a mod that can reorganize existing mods for Transport Fever 1 to the new format of Transport Fever 2. This covers the transformation of the old model hierarchy with group files to the new node tree too. Find out more over at
  • The Batch TPF1→TPF2 mdl convertor by Enzojz is a command line converter tool to transform the old model hierarchy with group files to the new node tree. It can be found at
  • The TpF2 Model Convertor by Enzojz is a command line converter tool to transform 3D models in ASE format to the Transport Fever 2 model format. It can be found at
  • The old Blender Import/Export Addon by Merk for Transport Fever 1 is used by many modders even for Transport Fever 2. The exported models then are transfered to Transport Fever 2 with one of the above tools in a second step. The Plugin can be found at Please note that the plugin is not compatible to Blender 2.80 or above.

Additional tools for various purposes are:

  • The Menübild Generator by Trunky can generate menu icons for vehicle buy groups. It can be found at
  • A spreadsheet to calculate tractiveEffort values for rail vehicles by Grimes can be found at
  • An interactive transformation matrix calculator by Xanos can be found at

modding/externaltools.txt · Last modified: 2022/05/13 12:57 by yoshi