Installing mods

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Modding Tutorials

This page was originally created by Alistaire.

What you'll learn

You'll learn where to install your downloaded mods and how to activate them, along with some notes on compatibility and backups.

Finding mods

Look online and find a mod that you want to try out. The main source for finding mods is the mod release section on the forums.

Once you find a mod you like that is compatible with the version of RimWorld you have, you can download them from their individual threads.

If you want to install a Steam mod manually, can help. This might be useful in saving historical versions or for playing offline.


  1. Open the downloaded ZIP archive
  2. Go to your RimWorld download location
  3. Windows:
    1. Find your RimWorld directory:
      • For Steam users, the directory is typically: C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steamapps\common\RimWorld
    2. Drag and drop the extracted ModName folder into your RimWorld\Mods\ folder (not in Core)
      • Make sure not to "double extract" your mod, e.g. RimWorld\Mods\Modfolder\Modfolder, when extracting your mod
  4. Mac:
    1. Right-click the RimWorld application and show package contents
      • For Steam users, the directory is: Library/Application\ Support/Steam/steamapps/common/RimWorld
    2. Drag and drop the ZIP archive's ModName folder into your Mods folder (not in Core) in the application package
  5. Linux:
    1. Unpack archive into the Mods folder ~/.steam/steam/steamapps/common/RimWorld/Mods
  6. Start up your game
  7. Click the Mods button and activate your mods.

Some mods require a fresh world generation to work.

Editing mods folder

In case your game stops running after you installed a mod, it's useful to have a backup of the mods folder somewhere. This way, you will always be able to undo a mistake that may occur.

It is also very important to never delete the ThingCategories.xml file in your mod pack; doing this will result in a black screen when trying to start the game up.


Not all mods are compatible with each other:

  • Many content mods - such as Weapon, Apparel, Faction or even Hair mods - are compatible with each other
  • Mods that change the same base game files, such as combat overhaul mods, are usually incompatible
  • Mods that add functionality to base game things are compatible but usually won't include the things from content mods
  • Modpack authors try to make mods in their pack compatible with each other. Adding or updating mods might break the pack.

You will know if you have incompatible mods if you are having serious gameplay issues, such as unplaceable items, graphical issues, colonists getting stuck, etc.
Having a console error might point to incompatibility as well, but some mods are expected to have console errors on start up.

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