Garry's Mod

Garry's Mod

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Spacebuild 3 and the Spacebuild Enhancement Project
By WaitingToCompile and 2 collaborators
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Learn to install and play spacebuild 3 with the spacebuild enhancement project content. build mighty spaceships, explore the universe, rain helfire on the planet below.

This guide is largely defunct, the gamemode was recently revived and it needs a revamp.
Public announcement
The gamemode has been revived ;) The guide will be updated when time presents itself!

This guide has been largely abandoned. I presently have no intentions of updating it further, I have lost interest in spacebuild, and it's creators seem to have vanished into the ether. There aren't many servers still running it now either. It seems this gamemode has, like so many others, died a death and been largely forgotten. I shall leave the guide here, on the off chance this gamemode undergoes some kind of revival.

On the plus side there are now games where you can do the whole make a spaceship fly a spaceship thing, so you can go and play one of those I guess.

What is spacebuild?
Spacebuild is a major addition to garry's mod. It allows you to construct huge spaceships and build life support systems to keep you alive out in space. While not formally a gamemode it can be treated as such, it has it's own dedicted maps and servers, and has a reasonable online community.

There is of course the slight has a steep learning curve. But not to worry, I'll guide you through getting to grips with the basics

For those of you who prefer it in video format here is the first video in a series of spacebuild tutorials that got me started in spacebuild. (Just to clarify I didn't make these videos, but they are good and I urge you to watch them)

Editor's note: Because all of the mods you need are in the workshop.
Installing Spacebuild
To play spacebuild you need three things.
- Wiremod
- Spacebuild itself
- the Spacebuild Enhancement Pack (technically you don't need it but it sucks without it and half my tutorial won't apply)

You also really should have
- advanced duplicator* (it's the only way to save ships)
- a parenting tool (to reduce lag and prevent spaceship parts gliding over each other mid flight)
- a basic understanding of Gmod construction (know how to use weld, easyweld, nocollide and the physgun, and understanding of how to use wiremod would help too).

Finally there are a few things you don't need but might want
- knowledge of expression 2 (one again I won't be explaining it, but it helps if you want complex automation)
- PewPew (allows you to have guns on your spaceship , but can only be downloaded via SVN, look in the next section)
- Acess to a nice spacebuild server (it's more fun with other people, there are lots of themk out there and I will at some point do server reviews)

By popular request I have added a section just below explaining how to install Spacebuild with SVN, for those of you who like it)


spacebuild 3
Workshop location:

Workshop location:

Advanced Duplicator 2
Workshop location:

Parenting Tool
This is nice and simple, go onto the workshop, search for parenting tools, loads will come up. pick one or two and click install. There, wasn't that easy.

How to Build in Garry's Mod
I'm not helping you with this one, look at other guides, mess around in sandbox, then come back.

If you're happy, skip the next section. However if you want PewPew (for weapons) or would prefer to use GIT read on.

*There are glitches when duping spaceships
How to install spacebuild using GIT
If you have installed as above, feel free to skip over this and go straight on to the actual gameplay (unless you want PewPew, and let’s face it you are going to want guns sooner or later)

GIT, short for Github is version control system, much like SVN. It is a system for managing updates for content. It is very easy to update an addon via GIT, and once you are familiar with the process easy to set up a SVN folder as well.

Git is very popular with the creators of GMod addons, and some addons (such as PewPew) are only available via SVN. However I dislike it because
1 – You need to install a third party program to use it
2 – The download cannot be paused

However when updating it is much quicker as it only requires about three clicks and it only downloads new or changed files.

There are many Git clients around, but I’m going to be using Tortoise Git ( as I consider it the best Git client for windows. If you have a different OS, or just want to be different, some details may be different.

Once you have installed the Git client you want (I won’t be explaining that, there are plenty of tutorials already, go and google them) we are going to need to create a folder to keep our Git clones in. Where you create it doesn’t matter, but keep it somewhere you can get to that makes sense.

Now to actually get the git repositories. For each one create a folder with a sensible name (SB for space build, wire for wiremod, that sort of thing). Right click on the first one and if you have installed tortoise correctly there should be an option marked Git Clone. Select it and in the box marked repository paste the relevant link. Once its downloaded check it’s all happy and drop it into your addons folder.

Just remember to go and get the workshop stuff as well (parenting tool and any useful building stuff you might need)

While we are here we might as grab pewpew as well. PewPew is the successor of GCombat (for those of you who remember). It basically adds lots of weapons to the game that you can then weld onto the side of your ship (or make into turrets or something along those lines). As a result it is very popular in spacebuild at it makes it possible to have epic space battles, and rain hellfire on the planet below (see, I wasn’t making it up)

Now for the full list of the SVN repositories:
Master Github -
Spacebuild 3 -
Wiremod -
Adv dupe -
PewPew -

When you want to update simply right click on the respository folder and select Git Pull.
Make a basic ship fly
So the first thing we are going to need is a ship. Note that this ship won't have life support, I'll explain that later.
So to start off boot up Gmod and load a spacebuild map. SB_newWorlds is a good one, just grab some maps of the workshop and then we are good to go.
I strongly recomend you make sure noclip is bound to a key you can reach easily. Making ships involves LOTS of noclipping.

So for your first ship we are going to use one of the pre-packaged ships that comes with SBEP (I said you'd need it) and kit it out. Press "q" to open the build menu and on the tools pane on the right scroll down to a section labled SBEP (look at the picture to the right). Select the tool marked part spawner. There should be a menu with lot's of options, select ships then pick one. For this I'm using the one with the blue square around it but most of those ships should be fine.
Left click somewhere and BAM you have a ship. but in order to fly we will need a seat. Any chair will do but I'd recommend either a captains char of a corvette chair.
Now that we have a seat, weld it in place as straight and as central as you can (easyweld is a good idea). Your ship should now look a little like this (though hopefully with a straighter seat).

So how will we propel this ship?, These are all too inaccurate, we need something precisce for what we are doing here. Fortunately SBEP provides us with that, it's called the gyropod. There is a tool to spawn one just below the part spawner so whip it out and create one. Then, using easyweld place it on the top of your ship. Make sure it is right in he middle and points the right way (the tips of the ears should go to the back of the ship). Now the ship looks like this:

Now there is the small matter of linking the gyropod to you chair. Firstly we will need a pod controller. You can find them in the wire tab of tools under I/O. Spawn one on the ship somewhere, I put mine next to the gyropod as it saves time when wiring. Now still with the pod controller tool right click on the pod controller you just spawned then left click on the chair. now that the chair and pod controller are lnked we can start wiring the gyropod. in wire open at the bottom grab the wire advanced tool. Hopefully you know how to use this. If you don't, go and mess around with wiremod till you do (there are plenty of good guides too, the adv wire tool is pretty easy, so you should pick it up fast). Now link active on the gyropod to active on the pod controller. the rest of the binds are up to you, I go with
  • Move forwards = W
  • Move bvackwards = S
  • Move left = A
  • Move right = D
  • Move up = space
  • Move down = shift
  • level = R
Make sure ALL of these are bound to something, and don't wire roll, pitch or yaw to anything, they are done differently.
Now for pitch and yaw. Open up the gyropod tool again, but this time right click on the gyropod. now left click on the chair. These are now linked and the look direction of the chair determines the pitch yaw and roll of the ship. however to control the sensetivity we need to do more wiring. create a wire constant value (they are under I/O in tools) set it somewhere around 1. This is your sensetivity, 1 is the default sensetivity, greater than one is more sensetive, less then one is less sensetive, negative numbers are inverted direction. wire pitchmulti, yawmulti and rollmulti to this variable (you could have seperate values for each if you want inverted pitch or different sensetivity).

You done all that? go and make sure everything really is wired then hop in your seat. remember you can press whatever key you set to level to make your ship flat. fly around a bit (don't leave the planet or you will start dying) and make sure you are happy with everything. Change the controls or sensetivity if need be.

This is all very well, except if you get out of the seat the ship immediatel plummets to the ground, probably killing you. this is where the gyropod's freeze function comes in. go back into wire and scroll to the top. selet the gate tool and on the left there should be a folder labeld logic gates. open it up and select the one marked not (invert). spawn it on your ship somewhere. now wire the gates input to active on the pod controller, and freeze on the gyropod to the gates output. Now whenever you get out of the chair the gyropod and all welded props freeze. You can still unfreeze them with your physgun though if you want.

You may want to save this ship with the adv dupe to save time if you need a ship quickly. If everything works it's time to move on to... nuclear weapons
Fit a ship with basic life support
Space is a harsh place, what with the abscence of air and it's extreme low temperatures. if you go out into space you will soon start dying, to for your ship to leave the planet you will need life support.

Sorry about the lack of pics for this section, they will be coming in due course. Also this stuff won't work properly unless you are on a spacebuild map.

Hit the noclip key and leave the planet. You should spot a small box at the bottom of your screen showing the temperature, and levels of air, energy and coolant. you can also see that these numbers are going down quickly and if they hit zero, you will soon die. Now that we know what we will be needing let's get back inside the planet before we drop dead.

So, power, oxygen and coolant (water or liquid nitrogen). In the Q menu open up the CAF tab on the far right. Here you wil see all the basic tools for a life support system. Press generators, then open up wind generators. Spawn a large wind generator on the surface somewher. That's power sorted, but we can't use it.
All LS systems are ultimately based around resource nodes. Everything has to connect to a node and it manages the distribution of resources in the network. The size of a node determines how far away linked objects can be. Grab the resource nodes tool and spawn a large node. Next select the link tool (also in the CAF tab) and click on the wind turbine, then the node. As you can see, the node now lists energy.

Next we need to set up sorage. Since we are on a planet we aren't limited by space, so we will want a resource cache. Resource caches are large but store a good amount of every single resource. select storage devices, resource caches, and spawn a large resouce cache. link it into the node and you will notice that a load of new resources appear on the readout, all showing 0 (except energy, which should now be filing up nicely.

Next for oxygen and water. Open up generators again and select oxygen compressors. spawn a huge oxygen compressor and link it into the network. Next press E on it and it will start up. It's load and annoying, but for now let's just live with it. Our cache should start to fill up with oxygen. Now spawn a huge water pump (once again generators menu). It should be partly submerged underwater to work properly. As before link it in and turn it on.
Now we need to get this stuff into our ship. Firstly spawn a node on you ship. A small or medium node should do. Next put either a small storgae cache (if you are lazy) or some of oxygen tanks, water tanks and batteries in the back (you can find them all under storage devices). now it's time to use the smart link tool, as it saves a lot of time and effort. select the smart link tool an click on all your tanks. now right click on your ship's node. They are now all linked to the node, and it was very quick and easy.

Next up we are going to need to provide you with this stuff in the ship. Grab the envirnomental control tool (still under CAF) and select air exchangers. spawn a small air exchange inside your ship, as well as a small heat exchanger. now link these, and your chair, to the node.

So now all there is left to do is get the resources from the planet into your ship. just link the two nodes together and your tanks should start fo fill up. once they are full, hit E on your air and heat exchangers, geth in you seat and fly out into space. The numbers showing how much air and coolant and energy you have should hold steady.

Just don't leave the ship or fly too long without refilling the tanks (unless you enjoy choking to death in the vaccum of space).
Better life support
So you have working life support, yes? There are however a couple of problems. Firstly there is only a limited amount of oxygen on each planet. As a result the oxygen wil eventually run out. While this is rarely a problem in singleplayer, it can be catastrophic in multiplayer. This means that many servers ban oxygen compressors in order to maintian a safe envionment on the spawn planet. Our system also has the disadvantage of being loud and slow.

While oxygen may be limited, water is not. The lake found on the spawn planet of every spacebuild map contains an infinite amount of water. This water can be pumped out, and with the help of another device, the H2O splitter, made into oxygen.

To do this there are a few steps. Firstly create a setup like before but remove the oxygen compresor and spawn an H2O splitter instead as well as linking the network up. Start everying up and the H2O splitter will consume water and produce hydrogen and oxygen. The hydrogen isn't much use to us at the moment.

However this setup is very loud, and slow. The solution comes from wiremod. Under the wire tab select the constant value tool (under IO), and set it's value to something big (for this setup 20 should be OK). Spawn it somewhere near you Life support kit, and turn everything off. Now get the Wire advanced tool (right at the bottom of the wire tab) and wire the "mute" and "multiplier" inputs for each to the constant value. Now if you turn them back on they will work much faster without creating any noise.

This setup has a number of other aplications. One of these is partially self contained life support on ships or stations. The ship or station needs only be supplied with water, energy and oxygen can be produced in space (using solar panels/fusion reactors and H2O splitters respectively).
Coming soon...
In the future I plan to add:
  • Some more pictures
  • How to make bigger ships
  • How to make ships with self contained life support
  • How to do weapons etc
  • How to make fancy complicated automated content for your ships
  • how to go about setting up a space station
  • Common server rules and a few server reviews
  • general tips and tricks for building good ships

They may not come in this order and I am not making promises about when they will come (if at all).
If I did make promises as to when, they would be in valve time. (because I do like to play the game too, and I do sometimes have to *shudders* go outside). I'm working on other things at the moment (Making games instead of just guides for addons), though hopefully Enzyme will be adding to the guide and helping to finish it.
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Dark_Ninja Nov 12, 2020 @ 2:11pm 
No life support or death when in space?
SpartanWar118 Apr 6, 2020 @ 1:55pm 
Is there a way to get life support working without compressors or a lake? cause the map i'm on is apparently quite lacking in water...
Goose Sep 29, 2019 @ 4:37pm 
The spaceage server is back up from 2012, ran by the original creator. Located at
Rosendale Jan 27, 2019 @ 4:10pm 
Yeah, pretty much
GoroGenio HUT.TF Jan 23, 2019 @ 10:31am 
Rosendale Jan 19, 2019 @ 4:07pm 
I do but incredibly rarely.
ム Erick Jan 19, 2019 @ 12:25pm 
Someone still playing this gamemode?
JumpingBarista Nov 3, 2018 @ 11:53am 
I figured it out, finally. Thanks!
Kitty Neo Oct 20, 2018 @ 2:07pm 
"This is all very well, except if you get out of the seat the ship immediatel plummets to the ground, probably killing you. this is where the gyropod's freeze function comes in. go back into wire and scroll to the top. selet the gate tool and on the left there should be a folder labeld logic gates. open it up and select the one marked not (invert). spawn it on your ship somewhere. now wire the gates input to active on the pod controller, and freeze on the gyropod to the gates output. Now whenever you get out of the chair the gyropod and all welded props freeze. You can still unfreeze them with your physgun though if you want."

Are you doing them in the right order? There should be an active output property on the pod controller.
JumpingBarista Oct 20, 2018 @ 11:22am 
Wire the active property? Can't see it, or .are you refering to my activate button on the gyropod?