Introduction to Playnite extensions
Playnite can be extended via extensions implemented via scripts and plugins:
- Scripts: PowerShell scripts are supported.
- Plugins: Any .NET Framework compatible language can be used (
Extensions fall under several categories of extended functionality that are available based on selected implementation:
|Adding game and main menu entries||•||•|
|Reacting to game events||•||•|
|Adding new UI elements||•|
|Injecting game actions||•|
Adding game and main menu entries- ability to add new executable menu entries to main menu and game menu.
Reacting to game events- ability to execute code when various game events occur, like when game is started or stopped for example.
Adding new UI elements- ability to add new UI elements to various views and panels.
Injecting game actions- gives ability to "inject" new Play, Install and Uninstall game actions in real-time.
Library importer- provides automatic import of games from various sources. For example all currently supported external clients (Steam, GOG, Origin etc.) are implemented via this extension type.
Metadata provider- provides metadata for games in Playnite. Our default metadata provider, IGDB.com, is also implemented as a metadata plugin.
Extension installation and update always replaces the entire extension directory completely. Meaning that any files that are not part of the installation package will be lost during installation process! It is highly recommended to store generated files in a separate extensions data folder. See Data directories page to learn more about extension directories.
There's currently very active community around theme/extension development on our Discord server. We highly recommend joining if you plan to develop add-ons for Playnite!
It's highly recommended to use Toolbox utility to create new extensions. It will generate base directory structure and all files needed for you.
1. Directory structure and location
First create new extension folder inside of Playnite's
Extensions directory. Location of
Extensions directory differs based on Playnite's installation type:
- Portable version:
Extensionsfolder directly inside of Playnite's installation location.
- Installed version:
You can load extensions from custom directories by adding them as developer plugins in Playnite's
For developers settings menu.
2. Manifest file
Every extension must provide valid manifest file in order to be recognized and loaded by Playnite. Manifest is YAML formatted file called
extension.yaml that must be stored inside of extension directory.
Resulting folder structure should look something like this:
├──Install directory or %AppData%\Playnite │ └── Extensions │ └── ExtensionFolder │ ├── extension.yaml │ └── scriptFileName.psm1 or pluginFileName.dll
See manifest file documentation page for more information about manifest contents.
3. Implementing extension
For scripts see scripting introduction page.
For plugins see plugins introduction page.
Extensions are loaded automatically by Playnite at every startup (unless extension is disabled via settings menu). Script can be reloaded at runtime via
Tools -> Reload Scripts menu. Plugins can't be reloaded at runtime.
Use Toolbox utility to package an extension or a theme and distribute
.pthm file to users.
The best place to share extensions is via Playnite add-on database, submitting an add-on there will make it available in Playnite's built-in add-on browser and will also enable easy add-on installation and updates.
It's also recommended to submit add-on entry to official Playnite forum, specifically add-on database sub-forum.