How To Add Models To Your Map

Recommended files for this tutorial
  • Valve Hammer Editor 3.5.

  • Modified counter-strike.fgd file.

  • Tree model.
Click here to download the above files in one package
This tutorial will guide you through the simple process of adding models to your map.

Before we begin adding a model to your map, let's take a look at where those model (.mdl) files are located.
Location of the model files

Adding your chosen model to your map
Now, for tutorial purposes, let's take a scene that just begs to include a model:

A tree model would look great as a central piece. To do this, we'll be adding a cycler_sprite entity to the map.

Click on the button or press Shift + E, and then click anywhere on one of the 2D windows. A small, green box will appear:

Now, press Enter. A default entity will be created, in this case, a light entity (the default entity may differ for you depending on your Hammer settings):

Next, click on the button or press Shift + S, and left click on the entity you've just created in any one of the four windows.

With the entity highlighted, right click on it in one of the 2D windows:

Clicking on Properties will bring up the Object Properties window. Here, we will change the entity into a cycler_sprite entity by clicking on the circled arrow, scrolling up the list, finding cycler_sprite, and left clicking on it:

Left click on Model / Sprite, then left click on the circled box with 3 dots in it:

Now, browse to your cstrike\models folder, choose the model you want to add (in this case, xen_tree2.mdl), left click on the .mdl file, and click on Open. Your Object Properties window should now look something like this:

Close the Object Properties window and see whether or not your model is where you want it (in this case, not at all):

To move the model, click on the button or press Shift + S, then left click and drag the model in the required 2D windows until it's in the desired place:

If this map were to be compiled now, the player would be able to walk straight through the tree, which isn't very realistic at all. If you'd like players to be able to walk through your models, ignore the next part of this tutorial.
How to make your newly-added model solid
The process of making your newly-added model solid, is quicky and easy. Simply click on the button or press Shift + B, and create a block covered in the NULL texture roughly the same size as the model:

Next, click on the button or press Shift + S, left click on the null-textured block in any of the windows, then press Ctrl + T to tie the block to an entity, which will also bring up the Object Properties window:

Taking what you've previously learnt about changing the class of an entity, change the class of the entity to func_wall if it's not already, then close the Object Properties window.

In the game, a player wouldn't be able to see this block, but they wouldn't be able to walk through it either.

Compile your map and marvel at your newly-added model!
I hope you've found this tutorial helpful. Please let me know whether there's any spelling mistakes, issues, or general improvements I'm able to make to it via your comments.

Thank you and happy mapping!