Wolfenstein: Youngblood Won’t Have Ray Tracing at Launch, NVIDIA Engineers Are Still Working on It


At Computex, Bethesda Softworks and NVIDIA announced that Wolfenstein: Youngblood would support ray tracing on PC (through NVIDIA's VKRay Vulkan API extension). We didn't get any further details on which effects in particular would be improved through ray tracing and now, four days before the game's release, we finally understand why.

In an interview with GamesBeat, Executive Producer Jerk Gustafsson from developer MachineGames revealed that ray tracing won't be available at launch in Wolfenstein: Youngblood as the NVIDIA engineers are still working on it.

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We’re working together with Nvidia on that, but raytracing won’t be available at launch. The engineers at Nvidia are still hard at work getting that solution to look as good as possible for the game, and the date is still to be determined. But from what we’ve seen so far, it’ll be good.

It is unclear whether Nvidia Adaptive Shading (NAS), another feature that was confirmed back then at Computex, will be available at launch. It seems likely, though, considering that NAS was already introduced to Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus last year through an update.

Wolfenstein: Youngblood is also launching day-and-date on the Nintendo Switch (in addition to the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One), a significant technical accomplishment as noted by Gustaffson.

I’m always impressed by the guys at Panic Button, that they can accomplish things like that. It’s a miracle. We’re pushing the engine pretty hard in this game. Of course we did that for New Colossus as well. These guys are magicians. It’s a great honor to be able to work with them. I’m very happy that we can get Youngblood on Switch.

It’ll also be released on July 26, but it’ll be download-only.

MachineGames co-developed Wolfenstein: Youngblood with Arkane Lyon, which led to non-linear level design similar to what we've seen in Arkane's Dishonored franchise. The game also features optional drop-in/drop-out cooperative multiplayer for two players, a first for the Wolfenstein reboot series.