See also: Creating a player model in Blender

THIS WON'T COVER STEPS ON HOW TO MODEL there's tons of tutorials for that.

Note: everything meant to be included in any official OpenArena release must be available under GPLv2 license (or Public Domain), not GPLv3. See also DeveloperFAQ#License.

OA3 NOTE: The MD3 model format is not used for the player models, for memory and performance reasons. The export pipeline to the preferred format MDR will be done in a new separate guide (which should cover new things, like the eyes system, new animations, and _safe/_lewd prefixes for content control)


You can download the latest version of Blender at Older versions of Blender are not guaranteed to work with the current version of the MD3 import/export scripts (see below).

0. Installing the MD3 I/O scripts in Blender[]

First, you need to obtain the MD3 I/O scripts for Blender. The latest version can be found on GitHub: neumond/blender-md3 (direct download: blender-md3). Be sure to check the repository often, especially when upgrading Blender.

When you have downloaded the .zip archive, extract the files and move the io_scene_md3 folder into Blender's add-ons folder. The add-ons folder can be found at one of the following places based on your operating system:

  • Windows: C:\Users\%username%\AppData\Roaming\Blender Foundation\Blender\[version]\scripts\addons
  • Linux: /home/$user/.config/blender/$version/scripts/addons
  • OS X: /Users/$user/Library/Application Support/Blender/[version]/scripts/addons

Once you have done this, you still need to enable the add-on in Blender. Open the File dropdown at the top and go to User Preferences. Navigate to the Add-ons tab. Scroll down through the list until you see "Import-Export: Quake 3 model (.md3)" and click the checkbox on the right to enable the plugin. Once you have done this, click the "Save User Settings" button at the bottom of the settings window. Please see Blender's Add-Ons manual page for more information.

The following Blender Manual pages can provide more information should you get lost:

1. Resizing[]

Make sure your model fits in the bounding of a typical player model. You could md3 import an existing OA player model such as Angelyss (lower.md3) to do this easily.

2. Cutting into pieces and making tags[]

Duplicate your mesh 3 times, and scale down the irrelevant parts and weld them

3. Preparing materials and textures[]

After doing that, name your materials to appropriate names like l_legs, u_torso, h_head, for the legs, torso, and head respectively. Make folders like


then make skin files, that have lines like:


Export to md3 and test in-game and see if you are happy with the proportions and check tag rotations

4. Animating[]

This is the hard part. You'll have to make armatures for your lower and upper models. You don't need one for the head as that's static.


The animation.cfg is the devil.

5. Exporting[]

Always go to the last frame of your animation.

Temporarily apply any modifiers before export, since the md3 exporter doesn't like them.

See also[]

External links[]