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                                          How to make and use a skin for Quake 3 Arena

What You’ll Need:
A copy of Quake 3 Arena
Pakscape, a free package compiling tool for Quake 3

Image editing software that can open and save .TGA files (Paint.NET is a good free one if you don’t have Photoshop)  

In this tutorial I will show you how to create your own skin for Quake 3 Arena and then import it into the game.

First, download Pakscape if you haven’t already, and then open it. Its icon looks like this:

   (Some May Prefer PAKEXPLORER)                                                                                                                                                   You should be presented with a blank Explorer-style window. Across the top you have options such as “File” and “Edit”. Click “File” and then “Open”. Once the Open window appears, browse to your Quake 3 directory, which is usually C:\Program Files\Quake III Arena, and then open the baseq3 folder.

 The contents of your baseq3 folder will differ from the one shown above, but the only file we want to concern ourselves with is pak0.pk3. Double click it to open it.
Inside the main Pakscape window will be a smaller window showing the contents of pak0. There are several folders but the only one we will be using is “models”.               

                                                                                                                                                               Once in the models folder, go to “players”, and for the purpose of this tutorial, we’ll be going into the “visor” folder.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          You’ll need to copy a few things out of PakScape here. All the files highlighted in red (head_default.skin, lower_default.skin, upper_default.skin, and visor.tga) Should be selected. Copy all of them by holding Control and pressing C, and paste them into a folder on the computer (Create a folder in My Documents called “tutorial” for this).
By this point you should have four files. First off, we’ll right-click on visor.tga and Open With.. (at this point you can either use Paint.NET or Photoshop, either work really well for this purpose)                                                                                                                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                                                 This is what you should see in your image editing program. Now comes the fun part; you get to customise it.
You can do whatever you like to change the skin, make it your own. Make it bright purple if you really want to.                                                                                 

I have changed all the colors and added some different patterns on this one. Once you are happy with the skin, save it as a TGA file. Name it whatever you like, as long as it’s relevant. I named mine “mrgoblin.tga”.

Next are the .skin files. Right click on head_default.skin and choose Open With. From the list that comes up, choose notepad. The contents won’t make much sense, however you only need to change one part.
On the first line, which says h_head,models/players/visor/visor.tga, the visor.tga should be changed to whatever you named your TGA file earlier, so I changed mine to mrgoblin.
Repeat this for the first line of lower_default and the third line of upper_default. Save all of these files, but rename the end of each to your character’s name.
In this case, my .skin files are called head_mrgoblin, lower_mrgoblin and upper_mrgoblin.     
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Go back into your image editor, and make a new file that’s 128×128 pixels. In this picture write the name of your character, and save it as icon_(your character’s name).tga.
Re-open PakScape, go to File and then New.
A blank window should open up. Right click in the large blank section, go to Object and then New Directory, and make a folder called “models”.      
                                                                                                                                                          Inside that make a folder called “players” and inside that a folder called “visor”.
Then go up to Object and Import File. Navigate to where you saved all the files for your skin, and select them all.  
                                                                                                                                                                                                      Then click “Open”. All the files should now appear in the small window. Once that’s done, it’s time to save the pak. To do this, go to File and then Save.
Navigate to your baseq3 folder. CHANGE THE FILE TYPE TO PK3 IN THE DROP DOWN MENU AT THE BOTTOM BEFORE NAMING IT.           
                                                                                                                                                                      Name the file whatever you like, and save it. I’ve gone for q3skn-tutorial.
Now open Quake 3, and navigate to Settings, then Player. Change your character and scroll through the options until you see your icon. Click on it and your character should appear at the side.