Best Stray mods: our top picks and how to install them

Stray launches on PC alongside PlayStation consoles just a couple of weeks ago. Which means there's already countless mods out there waiting for you to install them. To help narrow down your options, we've rounded up some of our favorites for you.

Of course, first things first: you need to know how to install Stray mods. Happily, it's a fairly straightforward process. Once you've got to grips with that, the world of Stray mods is your oyster. Or something more cat appropriate, like a juicy dead mouse. 

There's tons to peruse, from putting your own cat in the game, or swapping it out for Spyro, to playing splitscreen multiplayer. Some Stray mods are verging on outright creepy, so of course, we've included those.

Before you start tinkering, you might want to double check where to find the Stray save file location on your PC. Once you're readied yourself, dive into the list of mods below and enjoy the benefits of playing Stray on PC. If you're on PS4 or PS5, you may be missing out on mods, but there's a PS Plus trick that'll let you play Stray for free that you should take advantage of if you can.

Stray mods: best community mods

CJ from GTA: San Andreas

Cat from Stray modded so its a mini CJ from GTA San Andreas, holding a spotlight

(Image credit: ShnizellnBag via Nexus Mods)

Yep, you read that right. You can turn the cat from Stray into CJ from GTA: San Andreas. Why you'd want to do that are your reasons, and your reasons alone. I don't think any of us need – or want – to dig any deeper. But it's possible, thanks to Sirgalahad172 over on Nexus Mods.

The Stray CJ mod page does state that this is "intended as a joke as cj needs to be modded in any game that exists." And we applaud someone taking on that responsibility, regardless of how creepy the outcome. We're still waiting on that Stray Thomas the Tank Engine mod...

Pick of the Litter

Portrait images of five different color cats from the neck up illustrating the different options available in this particular Stray mod

(Image credit: SpaceD0lphin via Nexus Mods)

There are a bunch of mods that let you swap out Stray's ginger protagonist for a cat of a different color or breed. Pick of the litter  is one of them, and currently includes hand-painted alternative textures for black, white, brindle, grey, ghost tabby, and tuxedo cats as well as a brown point Siamese.

Of course, you can browse pages mods for individual traits, but creator SpaceD0lphin's says their  all-encompassing mod is for your convenience. The page says they'll be adding more variants in the future, and people in the comments are taking the opportunity to make specific requests based on their own cats. So if you're struggling to find one that perfectly captures your feline friend's likeness, you can always ask as well.   

Garfield

Garfield on all fours standing on a damp Cyberpunk street in place of the original cat in Stray thanks to a mod

(Image credit: Chris Rubino via Nexus Mods)

Stray's cat is transformed into the lasagna-loving, sarcasm spewing Garfield courtesy of Chris Rubino on Nexus Mods.

This iteration of the mod is dubbed the 'cartoon edition'. Chris says they're working on a high-res 'movie edition' but it'll be very GPU-intensive. While we wait for that, Garfield fans will be ecstatic to discover that the character's "adult voice over" has been added; but it comes with a warning to avoid it if you have young kids. 

What could be so egregious – aside from his attitude and nonstop pithy comments? Chris lists "funny adult talks" and fart sounds, to name a few. His signature "lazy meow" is another optional extra you can opt to try out if you want to commit to the bit.

Happy Puppy

French bulldog puppy standing on a damp street, taking the place of the ginger cat from Stray with a mod

(Image credit: Chris Rubino via Nexus Mods)

Like cats, but you're more of a dog person? Chris Rubino is swooping to the rescue with yet another mod, just for you. Dubbed 'happy puppy', the mod swaps out Stray's cat for (what I'm almost certain is) a French bulldog. And I have to say, it looks incredibly adorable with its little backpack on.

A pinned post suggests Chris hasn't gotten around to switching out the meows for barks. But they're probably too busy mediating the comments section which has devolved into cat people and dog people going to war. Because this is the internet after all.

If French bulldogs aren't your cup of tea, there's a Disney's Bolt mod that turns the cat into the the titular Bolt. It's not been slapped with a cease and desist yet, so enjoy that one while you can.

Decipher Stray's Language

Orange cat from Stray standing on the street with title card in English that reads 'save'

(Image credit: Awberry via Nexus Mods)

There are some people out there who might like the idea of decoding Stray's android language now that the code has largely been cracked. But others would rather skip the fuss and have the translations appear in-game, as if by magic. And that's just what this Latin alphabet mod claims to do.

"This mod replaces the seemingly unreadable characters in the game with Latin characters," reads the description. One poster doesn't seem to have had success, while the other appears to have had a smooth enough experience. 

Obviously, the mod will only swap out the font in chapter titles and the like. But you can translate in-game assets like graffiti etc using the original font file, as mod creator awberry points out

First-person POV

This Stray first-person POV mod by Jessica Natalia does exactly what it says on the tin. And it even gets a whole trailer to give you a taster before you download it. It'll make the game more immersive, that's for sure. 

Of course it might be a bit jarring, operating at cat-level, as well as the switch up in POV. Especially when it comes to platforming gameplay. But as Stray developer BlueTwelve revealed, " all the jumps are going to work and you cannot fall in the game." Otherwise, where's the fun in playing as a cat?    

Stray plants - the cat hanging out with books being chill

(Image credit: BlueTwelve Studios)

PC gamers are spoiled for choice when it comes to Stray mods, but there are a couple we haven't included that are worth highlighting. This Jason mod replaces meows with Heavy Rain's infamous "Jason!". A Sean mod has yet to appear, but it's only a matter of time. 

The Minecraft pig mod gets an honorable mention. And if you'd prefer your cat to be au naturel, the invisible backpack and drone mod strips away all accouterments. They're still there, they're just toggled off. 

Stray's cat is also popping up outside of its own game. This Stray Doom mod turns Doomguy into a butt-kicking cat, for example.  

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