Life is Strange: True Colors devs had to build an entire new lighting engine to improve Switch visuals

Life is Strange: True Colors Wavelengths DLC
(Image credit: Square Enix)

Life is Strange: True Colors required a new team and an entirely new lighting engine to improve its Nintendo Switch visuals. 

In a recent YouTube video by the Life is Strange: True Colors team, it was revealed just how much work went into bringing Alex and the rest of Haven Springs to the Nintendo Switch. According to the video, the latest release of the game was developed by a team of 30 people at Dragon’s Lake Entertainment, in collaboration with original studio Deck Nine and publisher Square Enix


The Nintendo Switch version was optimized to work in both docked and handheld mode (with docked able to deliver 1080p) and contains "exactly the same content as the other platforms." This includes the same facial animation, performance capture, full uncut soundtrack, and audio files as in the PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S versions of the game. 

One of the key differences between the Nintendo Switch version and the other platforms though is the new lighting engine, which was entirely rebuilt for the Nintendo Switch. As explained in the video, "there has been a new Switch lighting model created specifically for the rendering of lights on faces." This completely reconstructed engine is a Switch-specific solution that has been "optimized from the ground up to work efficiently with the way Switch processes graphics." 

This lighting isn’t the only thing that has received a slight downgrade in the Nintendo Switch version, as Alex, Steph, Ryan, and the rest of the Haven Springs gang’s character models have also been "optimized and reworked" to make them appear less clunky when brought over to the Nintendo Switch hardware. 

Now considering giving the Nintendo Switch version a try? Take a look at our Life is Strange: True Colors review to see if the game is worth your time. 

Hope Bellingham
News Writer

After studying Film Studies and Creative Writing at university, I was lucky enough to land a job as an intern at Player Two PR where I helped to release a number of indie titles. I then got even luckier when I became a Trainee News Writer at GamesRadar+ before being promoted to a fully-fledged News Writer after a year and a half of training.  My expertise lies in Animal Crossing: New Horizons, cozy indies, and The Last of Us, but especially in the Kingdom Hearts series. I'm also known to write about the odd Korean drama for the Entertainment team every now and then.