Installation Manual

From Black Mesa
Jump to: navigation, search



In this page you can find all the current requirements in order to play Black Mesa, installation instructions and some tips to get a better gameplay experience.

System Requirements

Hardware + Operating System

    Minimum Ideal  
Operating System* : Windows XP, Vista, or 7 Windows XP, Vista, or 7
Processor: Pentium 4 - 3.0 GHz, or AMD processor Intel Core 2 Duo 2.4GHz or AMD equivalent
RAM: 1GB (1024 MB) 2 GB (2048 MB)
Graphics Card: Shader Model 2.0 capable, ATI 9600, NVidia 6600 or better Shader Model 3.0 capable, ATI X1600, NVidia 7600 or better
Sound: DirectX 8.1 compatible DirectX 9.0c compatible
HDD** : At least 8 GB At least 8 GB

(*) Mac isn't officially supported, but does exist a way to play BM in that platform. No port for Xbox360 (although the Xbox360 controller is supported [1]). Linux will be supported only if developers could port the codebase over easily [2].''

(**) Not including the Free Source SDK, installed separately.


The Source SDK Base 2007

Black Mesa will require Steam client with the Source SDK Base 2007 installed to run.

Many Source games purchasable through Steam Store come with the Shared Resources, including the SDK, that you will need in order to run Black Mesa. To see if you can run Black Mesa, open Steam and look in the tools tab. If you see an entry titled "Source SDK Base 2007" installed, you can run Black Mesa.

As of July, 2011, Valve made the Source SDK free for anyone to download [3]. This means that users who create new Steam accounts will be able to play Black Mesa without having to purchase any games.

Please note that neither the Nvidia or ATI free game packages come with the SDK base.

If the SDK Base does not appear on the tools tab in Steam you must download it in order to play the mod.


Refer the Download Page for a complete list of multiple mirrors and options for download, or for a more comprehensive list of download links for the individual files, see this google spreadsheet:

The download size is 3.8 GB. When uncompressed and installed, the game will take approximately 8 GB [4] of your hard-drive.

At the moment, Black Mesa cannot be downloaded/installed via Steam. The mod has been accepted on Steam Greenlight, but when the mod will be available in that platform is entirely up to Valve [5] (Valve Time, you know...).

Installation Instructions (step by step)

These instructions direct you to downloading the 3 Black Mesa required installation files directly from one of the GameFront links area, however there are still many websites (and even other links available on GameFront) that have our installation files available. Refer the Download Page for a complete list of multiple mirrors and options for download, or for a more comprehensive list of download links for the individual files, see this google spreadsheet:

  1. Install Steam
  2. Install Source SDK 2007
    From inside the Steam interface click the dropdown menu "Library" then click "Tools".
    Scroll towards the bottom of the list, right click "Source SDK 2007" then choose "Install Game"
  3. Completely exit Steam
  4. Download Black Mesa from Game Front
    Half-Life 2 Mod - Black Mesa (1 of 3) - 3 GB (Attention! This is a VERY large file! So it may take a while to download!)
    Half-Life 2 Mod - Black Mesa (2 of 3) = 809 KB
    Half-Life 2 Mod - Black Mesa (3 of 3) = 101B
  5. Install Black Mesa
    Doubleclick the file blackmesa-setup.exe to start the installation process.
    Be sure the game is installed to the directory ...\Steam\steamapps\sourcemods\BMS
  6. Launch Steam and find the game "Black Mesa" listed in your game's "Library".

For more questions, concerns or problems with the installation, please be sure to visit the Troubleshooting Page or this page on the forums for additional help.

Happy Fragging!

Tips on hardware to get (almost) lag-free gameplay experience

You would need a videocard with a decent peak fillrate and a fast enough CPU with at least two cores. Memory requirements are at least 512MB of video card onboard memory (preferably of a GDDR5 kind; or at least of GDDRx kind and not an ordinary DDRx one) and about 1GB of free system memory available for game engine to use. Low frequency quad core CPU would perform worse than high frequency dual-core or triple core CPU.

Aim for 3GHz+ Intel Core i3/i5/i7 or 3.5GHz+ Athlon II/Phenom II or 3.8GHz+ AMD FX or AMD Socket FM1/FM2 AXX CPUs to be on a safe side. With Core i5/i7 and AMD FX CPUs SMT had been reported to cause performance regressions sometimes. You might wish to disable HyperThreding of your Intel CPU in motherboard system BIOS setup utility or set your AMD FX CPU to advertise one core per module if you happen to experience CPU-related performance issues in BM.

As for recommended GPUs: Basing on personal experiences and reports on the forums, the NVidia GTX480, GTX580 or GTX670/680 would work well. SLI configurations had also been reported to work well – i.e. it's OK to use 2xGTX460 or 2xGTX560, and dual-chip cards like GTX490/590 would also work well. Expect some micro-stutter and worse minimal FPS with SLI – this is a typical problem for this technology.

See also

Personal tools