Coloring Book Review

I can see your true colours

You can tell that a console’s online store is a success when developers start filling it with all kinds of simplistic applications. Yes, the Switch eShop could and should have undergone a major overhaul by now in order to make it easier to find its games and apps, but that hasn’t stopped developers from making some serious profits by bringing its games to the service.

You can choose from a small number of art settings in the menu.

When you have something so popular, it’s only a matter of time before mediums cross paths, and Coloring Book is one such application to step up to this plate. Quite simply, this is Microsoft Paint for the Switch, and with no sign of a Mario Paint seemingly on the horizon, this is where parents will be able to occupy their young children if they’re out of ideas for more orthodox games on the Switch.

And it really is pretty much the same offering that just about everyone is used to when it comes to the likes of Microsoft Paint. Brush strokes come in a varying range of thickness, while you can also use a spray can for a scattered-type effect. Furthermore, the fill function ensures that all of your colouring is done in between the lines, though makes the actual colouring experience a very bite-sized affair.

You’re free to start and stop colouring as you please.

Of course, you’ll want to play this with the Switch on your lap in handheld mode, ideally using colour strokes. This is a colour between the lines type game, so you won’t be getting the same experience as you would in the excellent Art Academy games that were released on 3DS, and you’ll always be working with pre-drawn art. But of course, the thing to remember is that this game is free.

The developers have got to make their money somehow, however, so there are additional illustrations waiting to be coloured in which are available as paid DLC. But with numerous images available to colour in as part of the free package, justifying stumping up the cash for more of them is a hard sell.

One of the more complicated bits of artwork to fill in.

With Coloring Book, the fact of the matter is the package is limited by the fact that it is an app and not a game. There’s no real acknowledgement when you have beautifully coloured in a picture, and you can continue to tinker with your finished picture to your heart’s content. But it’s not like you can unlock new illustrations by being really, really good at colouring – it’s a case of colouring each of the pictures until you’re satisfied you can do no more with it, then moving onto the next.

It’s not like the game version of a colouring book makes a major improvement on the paper-based equivalent other than in the ability to easily wipe your colours clean and start over, but of course it’s pretty handy when you have a console which you take with you on the go like the Switch that when you’ve decided you need a break from the games, this app can be stored away on your Switch menu to fill the void. Just don’t expect to break out all like Picasso.

Coloring Book


Coloring Book is one of those “as good as you make it” type experiences. You won’t be playing it for ages, but it’s a handy app to have as a time-killer stored away on your Switch.