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Garry's Mod (commonly abbreviated as GMod) is a sandbox physics game developed by Facepunch Studios and published by Valve Corporation. Garry's Mod was originally a mod created by Garry Newman for Valve's Half-Life 2 but was later made into a standalone release on 29 November 2006 for Microsoft Windows.[1] Later updates saw an OS X port, added in 2010, and a Linux port in 2013.

Garry's Mod
Logo of Garry's Mod
Developer(s)Facepunch Studios
Publisher(s)Valve Corporation
  • Garry Newman
  • William Wallace
  • Andres Krymm
Platform(s)Microsoft Windows, macOS, Linux
ReleaseMicrosoft Windows
  • WW: 24 December 2004
  • WW: 23 September 2010
  • WW: 7 June 2013
Mode(s)Single-player, multiplayer



Screenshot from Garry's Mod showing a player posing the Heavy and Soldier from Team Fortress 2

The base game mode "sandbox" has no set objectives, and gives the player the freedom to spawn non-player characters (NPCs), ragdolls or objects (called props), such as furniture, shipping containers, dumpsters and explosions, and interact with them in various ways.

A variety of props, NPCs, ragdolls, vehicles and add-ons can be selected and placed into the sandbox from any installed game running on the Source game engine or from the community-created collections, such as PHX3 for props and Civil Protection model packs for ragdolls. An important tool offered to the player, the Physics Gun (sometimes called the Phys-Gun), allows the props and ragdolls to be picked up, rotated, and frozen in place. Another important implement, the Tool Gun, is a multi-purpose tool for performing various tasks, such as constraining props together, creating interactive buttons, and creating controllable winches and wheels. It can also be used to change the facial expression and pose the digits of a ragdoll. The Tool Gun can also be used to control and use add-ons created by the community, which can be accessed through the Steam Workshop.

The game uses the Source engine's modified version of the Havok physics engine,[2] which allows players to build contraptions that follow the laws of physics, allowing realistic simulations of structures and experiments.

User-created contentEdit

Garry's Mod allows users to take advantage of the extensibility of the Source Engine through the spawn menu, which enables users to spawn models and maps imported by the user. Since Garry's Mod version 9, Lua scripting has been a notable feature added to the game which allows players to run their own scripts, which expanded potential user modifications by enabling the creation of scripted weapons, entities, vehicles, tools, game modes and NPCs that weren't possible in the game before.[3] Multiplayer game servers will automatically attempt to send any custom content to the client when they connect.[4] Most users prefer to download the Server Data from the Steam Workshop. Examples include game modes such as Trouble in Terrorist Town, DarkRP, Deathrun, Jailbreak, Prop Hunt, and Murder.[5]


Wiremod is a user-created mod that significantly expands the sandbox capabilities of the game by adding a large number of pseudo-electronic components such as microcontrollers, logic gates, buttons, radios, gyroscopes, screens, GPS modules, sensors, laser rangefinders, speed sensors and much more. Wiring these components together allows the player to create a very large variety of electronically-controlled machines. It also features Expression2 (E2) general-purpose controllers, which allow the player to program the chip with a high-level programming language to compute inputs and outputs to control a wide swathe of elements. CPU modules, which use a Low-level programming language, allow similar capabilities, as well as the capability to render graphics on a digital screen, to be able to fully simulate a virtual computer. The use of Wiremod allows the creation of very complex contraptions, and everything from virtual computers to missiles, aircraft, spaceships and space probes, robots and drones; all constructed from components available in-game without the use of modded entities.

Fretta contestEdit

In winter 2009–2010, a contest was held for Garry's Mod by the game's developers to create the best new game mode using a programming framework called "Fretta".[6] Fretta, Italian for "hurry", allows developers to quickly and easily create new game modes for Garry's Mod with commonly required functionality already implemented so the developers can focus on unique aspects of their game modes. Fretta was inspired by a similar fan-created framework "Rambo_6's Simple Gamemode Base". However, for inclusion in Garry's Mod, Newman decided to rewrite it with input and contributions from the original author and other developers.[7] The winners of the contest range from a recreation of the Mafia party game to an aerial combat game mode.[8] The contest winners have been included in Garry's Mod with their own Steam Achievements.[9]

Toybox and Steam WorkshopEdit

Garry's Mod 10 added a function called Toybox into the spawn menu (in Sandbox) that allowed players to share and download user-created content. After 2012's release of the Steam Workshop feature, Garry's Mod 13 replaced the Toybox feature with Steam Workshop. With the Steam Workshop feature came more add-ons for game modes other than Sandbox, with nearly 1.3 million Steam Workshop items.[10] A deeper connection to dedicated servers using "collections" (a feature called FastDL for its faster download speeds than downloading directly from the server itself), and other small improvements.

GMod TowerEdit

In July 2009, a small team of developers, working under the names MacDGuy, Mr Sunabouzu, Nican and AzuiSleet, released a server designed for Garry's Mod called GMod Tower.[11] GMod Tower was a server designed as a social media platform for users to get together and play minigames. Within hours of release, the website for GMod Tower reached two million views.[11]

The developers of GMod Tower later formed PixelTail Games, a Washington state-based developer designed to oversee future updates of the server, which shut down in 2016 and was replaced by its own standalone game, Tower Unite.[12] Speaking to PC Gamer about the move to independence, MacDGuy stated that Garry's Mod and the Source engine had limited them on ideas.[11]


Garry's Mod became available as a paid game on Valve's digital distribution service Steam on 29 November 2006.[13] Before this, earlier versions of the game were released for free between 2004 and 2005, with the last free version released on 27 November 2005.[14] As of January 2016, the game has sold 10 million copies.[15]

Possible sequelEdit

In September 2015, a sequel based on Garry's Mod was confirmed. The attention surrounding the sequel took off when Newman took to Facepunch Forums to ask users ideas for changes. From the thread, confirmed changes/features include a new hook system for add-ons, sandboxed add-ons, permissions to access local hardware on the player's PC, in-game Workshop browsing/spawning, and Lua modules.[16]

However, in March 2016, Newman revealed that there had been little progression on the planned sequel and suggested it "might never come out."[17] When asked about when the game could possibly release five months later, Newman stated that the game would release on 16 September.[18]

The following year, Newman revealed Sandbox (stylised as S&box), a game that could "possibly become Garry's Mod 2".[19] It features a hotloading C# layer on top of Unreal Engine 4. It is not known if Sandbox is the sequel mentioned above, or an entirely separate game.


Garry's Mod won Computer Games Magazine's 2005 "Best Mod"[20] and PC Gamer US's "Best Mod 2005" awards. The latter magazine's Dan Stapleton called it "ingenious".[21] Garry's Mod also won the Steam Awards 'Defies Description' Award in 2017.[22] Also in 2017, it was featured in Rock, Paper, Shotgun's Have You Played? series.[23]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Garry Newman's presentation". Retrieved 5 May 2015.
  2. ^ "List of Available Games". Archived from the original on 26 December 2010. Retrieved 5 May 2010.
  3. ^ "A Brief History Of Garry's Mod: Count To Ten". Rock, Paper, Shotgun. 29 August 2012. Retrieved 16 May 2015.
  4. ^ "Garry's Mod Lua Wiki – Resource.AddFile". Team Garry. October 2008. Archived from the original on 11 July 2011. Retrieved 5 October 2008.
  5. ^ "Garry's Mod Review". Retrieved 14 May 2015.
  6. ^ "Garry's Mod – Fretta Game mode Contest". Archived from the original on 22 March 2012. Retrieved 6 June 2010.
  7. ^ "Fretta Gamemode Base". Retrieved 6 June 2010.
  8. ^ "Fretta Contest Winners (2)". Archived from the original on 10 July 2011. Retrieved 6 June 2010.
  9. ^ "Fretta Contest Winners". Archived from the original on 3 May 2012. Retrieved 6 June 2010.
  10. ^ "Steam Workshop :: Garry's Mod". Retrieved 6 December 2016.
  11. ^ a b c "The rise, fall and future of Gmod Tower". pcgamer. Retrieved 7 November 2018.
  12. ^ "Ridealong: The bizarre resort town of Tower Unite". Rock Paper Shotgun. Retrieved 7 November 2018.
  13. ^ "Garry's Mod". Steam. Valve Corporation. Retrieved 24 June 2010.
  14. ^ "Garry 's Mod History". Garry's Mod. Retrieved 5 October 2014.
  15. ^ Hillier, Brenna (3 January 2016). "At 10 million sales, Garry's Mod is still going strong". VG247. Retrieved 3 January 2016.
  16. ^ Chalk, Andy (9 September 2015). "A Garry's Mod sequel is in the works". PC Gamer. Retrieved 13 February 2016.
  17. ^ Stead, Chris (2 March 2016). "Garry's Mod 2 "might never come out"". Retrieved 3 March 2016.
  18. ^ "Garry Newman on Twitter". Retrieved 10 September 2016.
  19. ^ Donnelly, Joe (5 September 2017). "S&box could become Garry's Mod 2 but is 'nowhere near that yet,' says GMod creator".
  20. ^ Staff (March 2006). "The Best (and Worst) of 2005; The 15th Annual Computer Games Awards". Computer Games Magazine (184): 42–47.
  21. ^ Stapleton, Dan (March 2006). "The Twelfth Annual PC Gamer Awards". PC Gamer US. 13 (3): 33–36, 38, 40–42, 44.
  22. ^ Pereira, Chris (5 January 2018). "Steam Awards 2017 Winners Announced And, Surprise, The Witcher 3 Is Still Winning Things". Gamespot.
  23. ^ Caldwell, Brendan (29 March 2017). "Have You Played… Garry's Mod?". Rock, Paper, Shotgun.

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