Products » Traffic Lights

A Supplementary Signaling System for Tabletop Roleplaying Games

Traffic Lights is a supplementary signalling system for tabletop roleplaying games, developed by Peter Malmberg. Use the card to signal to your fellow players how you feel about what’s happening. The card also functions as a pause button for when you feel that things have gone too far.

The system is simple, intuitive and compatible with all tabletop roleplaying games. Each player gets a card with two sides: one green side and one yellow/red side.

  • Hold up the green side to encourage players to keep going in the direction they’re heading, or to show appreciation for what they’re doing.
  • Hold up the yellow/red side to show that you’re uncomfortable with where things are heading—and that your fellow players should change direction.
  • Put the card down in the middle of the table to pause the game. You don’t have to explain why, and you may leave the table if you want to. When you’re ready, you can restart with a new scene replacing the previous one.

The purpose of Traffic Lights is to allow for clear communication within a gaming group, increasing the emotional safety for the participants. The system is designed to encourage frequent interaction with the cards—thereby reducing the taboo of indicating personal discomfort.

Traffic Lights is especially well suited for play with unfamiliar  groups—such as game sessions at conventions—as well as for games that explore sensitive themes.


X-Card, by John Stavropoulos

”Are You Crying For Real, or Just Pretending?”, by Jason Morningstar

”Using the X-card”, on Story Games

”Safety in games, tools for same, and on the cutting of scenes”, on Story Games

”Notes on Kutt, Brems and Emotional Safety”, on The Larpwright

“Safety and Calibration tools”, by Dale Horstman & Karen Twelves

“Att opta in och opta ut – designa för säkerhet”, by Johanna Koljonen

Release: 2019
Author: Peter Malmberg
Language: English