A motif typically has the following components:
- A replacement for the title screen and associated option menus, also known as the frontend.
- A replacement for the select screen and a custom select.def to go with it. Usually, these allow for a very large number of characters to be installed, sometimes in the thousands.
- A replacement for the versus screen.
- A replacement for the in-game fight screen, containing custom lifebars, combo counter and cut-ins for round starts, knockouts and other items.
The first two segments replace system.def and associated files, while the last part replaces fight.def and associated files.
Thus, the frontend is able to operate independently of the versus screen, so mixing and matching different graphic sets for the menu and fight screens is possible.
As such, some packs only contain a set of fight screen graphics and sounds. These are referred to as "lifebars", due to that being the main thing that they change.