All That Glitters: Thief HD Texture Mod Updated

They call it The Dark Project for a reason, you know.

If you’re examining floor textures in Thief: The Dark Project, you’re not paying enough attention. Stop staring at that cobble and watch for the guards strolling across it, taffer. Still, given that the game is old enough for a metal dealer’s license, I can see why you might want to freshen it up – teenagers can be an awful lot.

Many moons ago we peeked at the first release of the Thief Gold HD Texture Mod, a fan project giving the game a shower, a haircut, and £50 in H&M vouchers. The mod has now reached version 1.0, making more prettier than ever.

You can find the changelog for the latest version over here. What’ll we find in there? More new textures, of course, lightmapped water and lava, some new higher-poly 3D objects, a new settings tool, and so on. Looking at comparison screenshots, yep, those are some nice changes.

You can download version 1.0 of the mod from ModDB. Do check the FAQ for installation instructions.

Project lead Bentraxx is also behind a texture mod for Thief II: The Metal Age.

Here’s a recent-ish video looking at v1.0:


  1. SlimShanks says:

    Erm… I really like Thief Deadly Shadows, but have never played the first or second because I find it hard to tell wtf is happening in some games of that era. Something about early 3d doesn’t work for me… Anyways this should help my problem. Sweet!

    • median says:

      It might make your problem worse, actually; it’s just adding more detail on top of the existing geometry.

      But I know what you mean. From the videos here, Thief feels horizontally compressed … maybe the FOV is set higher than my taste.

      • Baines says:

        They did switch to higher poly models for at least some objects, but the rest is reskins. And everything looks even darker now.

    • GepardenK says:

      If you use Tfix to make the game support modern resolutions then you should have no problem at all enjoying the game. The game has aged really well and the graphics are “bad” in the same way Minecraft graphics are “bad”, they look really horrible at first but give it 1,5 hours and everything suddenly makes sense and feels good.

      The HD mod makes textures really sharp but also looks out of place in some areas and makes the game less consistent (a dealbreaker since Thief is a very consistent game; design wise). I reccomend HD only if you you still think the game looks crap after 1-2 hours of play.

      You should really play T 1&2 though, HD or no HD. They are masterpieces

    • TillEulenspiegel says:

      Everyone hates early 3D. Those games looked terrible compared to their 2D contemporaries (this was a *huge* controversy at the time), and they looked like complete trash just a few years later. And now? Ugh.

      Sometimes it’s worth suffering through that, though. Put aside a full hour to focus on just the game. If it hasn’t hooked you by then, well, maybe it’s not worth it.

      • dethtoll says:

        I love early 3D. I prefer the likes of Afraid of Monsters and Silent Hill 1 to your fancy-dancy Amnesia and its zillion soulless clones.

    • SlimShanks says:

      Oh I’ll play it if it kills me. I mean, it couldn’t look any worse than Deus Ex, right? Heh…

  2. median says:

    My favorite master thief! He’s so good, he wears tap shoes to challenge himself; and so profligate he can barely pay rent on his studio apartment. What’s not to love?

    I was just looking at Thief in my steam library last night, wondering what the modders were up to. Is there anything to be done about the character models & animation? They have their tafferesque charm, but it’s one thing about the game that isn’t aging well. I’m guessing it’s a limitation in the original engine. Maybe some day Thief will be recreated in a different engine; preferably oculus-rift ready.

    • median says:

      I see past RPS’ers have discussed recreating Thief in a new engine and the consensus is that a team of lawyers from Eidos would shut it down.

      link to

      • corbain says:

        It’s already been done by The Dark Mod…. which receates a Thief-like game in the Doom 3 engine.

  3. Premium User Badge

    Aerothorn says:

    “They call it The Dark Project for a reason.”

    No kidding. I actually had to install black sheets on my windows to play it back in the day (this was before the brightness of LCDs, when blacks were blacks).

    • Buggery says:

      “when blacks were blacks” indeed. And why not call a shovel a spade?

      Go back to the BNP, racist.

  4. X_kot says:

    Oooh, the blood, it just turns my poor tummy.

  5. morbiusnl says:


  6. fish99 says:

    I dunno if it’s youtube, or they turned the brightness up to show off the textures, but Thief needs to be played a lot darker than shown in that video, and of course that means playing in the dark. It’s true that LCDs struggle to do the game justice compared with old CRTs, but if I play it in stereo 3D the glasses make everything darker and it mostly fixes the black depth issue.

    The Thief games still have a ton of atmosphere due to the amazing sound design, and the fact that Garrett is pretty weedy.

  7. RProxyOnly says:


  8. wilemanaltogether says:

    Its really nice and Reshade works really well along with it.

    link to

    The new emboss and pseudo bump mapping shaders in the 1.0 release work nicely with really old stuff like Thief.