This thread is a repost of my original SPUF thread. I'll keep it up to date here.
This fix involves just one texture file replacement!
Please confirm below if it works for you.
If you are experiencing the problem with vehicles being too dark or completely yellow in Grand Theft Auto III, you don't want to replace any EXE files and you don't want to install any mods, this fix is just for you.
In order to fix the problem, just follow these five simple steps:
- Make a copy of your "particle.txd" file in the following directory: "PATH_TO_STEAM\steamapps\common\grand theft auto 3\models\"
- Download the "particle.txd.zip" file from the following location: particle.txd.zip (mirror)
- Unpack the "particle.txd" file from the ZIP archive.
- Replace your original "particle.txd" file (not the copy!) with the downloaded one.
- Run the game and have fun!
Now, let me describe what this is all about.
I've been trying to find a fix for this bug since I bought GTA III a week ago during the Rockstar Weekend sale. I, and probably some of you too, have already noticed that reflective surfaces on vehicles are too dark or opaque yellow - everything else is just fine. Since GTA III uses only one reflection texture for all vehicles, I modified it a little bit. Turns out that all I had to do was remove the alpha channel (which was unused anyway) from the said texture and that was it. After launching the game, all vehicles were back to normal - the problem was no more.
The affected reflection texture (named "reflection01") is stored in the "particle.txd" file, which is an archive that stores quite a few other textures responsible for, you guessed it, mostly particle effects. Apart from the aforementioned texture, nothing else was deliberately changed. The game can still be considered vanilla.
It's also worth explaining why the retail (CD/DVD) version users are not affected by this problem. It's simply because Rockstar have apparently tweaked the Steam version a little bit before publishing it. It might have made vehicles dark but also enabled one great and often overseen feature - all cars now have glowing headlights (just like on the PlayStation 2), while the retail version still lacks them. See for yourself: Steam