Retro Graphics Toolkit

From Sega Retro


Retro Graphics Toolkit is a useful tool for all your graphical needs written by Sega16.

Initially released to the community as open source GPLv3 in the year of 2013 it has since grown to include lots of useful features that make the process of converting an image to a format suitable for display on a retro gaming system fast and easy.


  • Image importing with support for many common formats such as JPG GIF PNG and more.
  • Several dithering algorithms
  • Palette editing
  • Tile editing
  • Plane editing which can function as a block editor as well
  • Chunk editing
  • Sprite editing
  • Level editing
  • Can automatically assign palette row to tiles based on content of tiles. (Which tile looks best using which row).
  • Support for the following systems:
    • Sega Genesis
    • NES
    • Master System
    • Game Gear
  • (Sega genesis specific feature) Shadow Highlight mode
  • Save compressed tiles and tilemaps. Supports Nemesis compression, Kosinski compression and Enigma compression
  • Lua scripting for added flexibility

The truecolor workflow

Retro Graphics Toolkit stores both tiles in a format native to the system and true-color tiles meaning that if you alter the palette the original tiles will be preserved and the graphics won't have to be redrawn to fix the new palette. Just re-dither.

As an example of why this is advantageous consider attempting to make a cross platform game. With Retro Graphics Toolkit it is easy to manage the graphics for multiple systems at one with ease.

Retro Graphics Toolkit also makes alpha transparency very easy as you can import a PNG file with alpha transparency and it will be preserved also the tile editor allows you to edit both the true-color (which includes alpha transparency editing) and the output tiles. Color 0 in the palette entry will be what is assigned to transparent pixels. So in short Retro Graphics toolkit makes worrying about color limitations a thing of the past.


The source code can be found here:

For windows users who do not want to compile Retro Graphics Toolkit yourself I supply a windows binary. Note that it is not always up to date with the latest commit. download click on "View Raw".


To learn more about Retro Graphics Toolkit you should read the wiki which is located here: