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Colour-Coded for Your Convenience

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Green means go.
Red means stop.
Yellow means floor it!note 

"The light is green; the trap is clean."
Ray, Ghostbusters

Vision is the one sense we humans rely on the most. We usually identify things by sight rather than sound or smell. It is for this reason that creators of visual media will make sure that things look different enough for the audience to easily recognize and tell apart. It can also be a form of visual shorthand for characterization, so that the audience can tell certain things about a character or setting without having to be told.

In addition, to the audience, this trope may be used in-Universe so that the characters can easily tell the difference between groups or things.

One way to do this is to use color as an indicator that two things are different (when using different colours) or two things belong to the same category (when using the same colors). Color can indicate who is the good guy and who is the bad guy, they can indicate personality type, they can say things about gameplay elements in a video game, which organization or group the person belongs to, and so on.


In Real Life colors are often used to distinguish everything from the meaning of lights, to wires, labels, faucets and other signs.

Bright, contrasting colors, particularly primary and complementary colors, are the most common. Regardless what they're used to symbolize, when things are color coded you can almost always count on a Red and a Blue. Further seeing a Green or a Yellow is also common. Purple and Orange are more rare unless you have enough units for a full Rainbow Motif or more.

Named for a scene in The Order of the Stick, where two characters are discussing Good Colors, Evil Colors as it applies to dragons.

Compare Good and Evil for Your Convenience, Sound-Coded for Your Convenience, Dress-Coded for Your Convenience.


Sub Tropes:



Please only list examples that do not fall under one of the above subtropes.

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    Anime & Manga 
  • Is the Order a Rabbit?: In the manga, Chino mentioned the town requires that its buildings to show the occupations of the occupants by this trope. For example, fishmongers will need to paint their houses blue, and bakers pink.
  • In Mission: Yozakura Family: Each of the Yozakuras is associated with a particular color, which shows up in their hair and eyes.
    • Taiyo - Red.
    • Mutsumi - Deep blue.
    • Kyoichiro - Black.
    • Futaba - White.
    • Shinzo - Green.
    • Shion - Pink.
    • Kengo - Yellow.
    • Nanao - Teal.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh! GX: The three dorms in Duel Academy, Osiris Red, Ra Yellow, and Obelisk Blue, reflect the test scores and prestige of their respective students. Ra Yellow for instance is for students who took the High School exam and achieved a good score.
  • In Yu-Gi-Oh! ARC-V, this trope gets a lot more complicated.
    • First of all, each of the four dimensions is associated with a main colour: red for Standard, purple for Fusion, green for Synchro and blue for Xyz. This tends to get referenced in indirect ways, such as the Dimensional Dragons glowing in their respective colours, or the users of the various summoning methods having a hint of those colours in their appearance.
    • Duel Academy still follows the Red/Yellow/Blue theme from above, with the addition of purple for the highest ranks (teachers, elite members etc). This in turn, with the rare - and justified - exception, makes it very easy to identify its current or former members. It also serves are Foreshadowing in some cases.
    • The members of La Résistance wear a red scarf somewhere on their bodies.
    • Finally, a number of duelists include a hint of their summoning methods in their clothing. For example Gogenzaka, Yaiba, Yugo and Jack Atlas (Synchro users) all dress primarily in white, the Xyz users follow a very dark colour motif, or the two Ritual users wear something blue.

    Comic Books 
  • The Pitiful Human Lizard: The Majestic Rat has dyed his legions of rats in various colours to split them up into teams. This allows him to better coordinate their movements.
  • In Violine, the doctor has various pills, whose functions are differentiated by colour.
  • In White Sand, the Sand Masters are big on using colours.
    • Sand Master applicants wear brown robes, while full Masters wear white ones.
    • Within the diem, each rank has a sash of a proper colour.
  • In Zodiac Starforce, though the Zodiac forms are predominantly light blue and white, each member of Starforce has their own colour scheme: Kim is blue, Molly is red, and Savanna is green. Emma takes the cake, since her uniform is almost completely pink and red.

    Fan Works 
  • In Clouded Sky, there are temples dedicated to each Pokémon type, and the acolytes of the temples dress in colors that correspond with the type their temple represents (Fire Temple = Red, Water Temple = Blue, etc.).
  • In The Dimensional Drifter, this is brought up as a plot point. Judai, Johan and Sora's Non Uniform Uniforms all follow the strict colour-coding of Academia's ranking, so everyone who sees them immediately assumes they all are acquainted and go to the same school — even the three duelists themselves. Judai and Johan use that to trick Sora into believing he's among allies.
  • In The God Empress of Ponykind, conversation in the Warp is done in color, to identify who is speaking: Celestia/ The Emperor speaks in gold, Tzeentch in blue, Nurgle in olive, Slaanesh in purple, Khorne in red, Isha in green and Horus in silver. Luna is not powerful enough to have a significant Warp presence, so her text is not colored.
  • A Growing Affection has Shozokus, a certain ninja army who wear full stealth uniforms color coded by rank and approximate skill level (see the fic's main page for the full list).
  • Kill la Kill AU:
    • In comic 32, nurses / doctors tend to wear what the colors of their corresponding wards are, i.e intensive care workers are seen wearing light or yellow green and psychward doctors are wearing pale greyish blue or lavender.
    • Nui, Ryuko, and Satsuki's blankets when they were babies, as Satsuki's was blue, Nui's pink, and Ryuuko's was red. This is more apparent in comic 9, when Ragyo was almost handed a baby Kaneo Takarada who is in the yellow blanket and was later handed her own child who's shown to be in red blanket.
  • The Legend of Total Drama Island features color coding in a couple of the challenges:
    • During the paintball deer hunt, the contestants playing the deer wear tails and antlers in their team colors. The hunters likewise have paintballs in their team colors, with each hunter having a different shade so the scorekeeper can tell at the end who hit whom.
    • For the marksmanship training in the boot camp challenge, which also uses paintball guns, every player has a different color of paint to show in a viewer-friendly manner who hits what.
  • In My Brave Pony: Starfleet Magic, unicorns of a certain color tend to live in a specific area of Unicornicopia. For example, blue unicorns live in Bluesville. The only remotely clever name is O-Range for orange unicorns.
  • The Powers of Harmony: Each Element of Harmony has a particular color attached to it:
    • Generosity: Silver
    • Laughter: Blue
    • Magic: White
    • Loyalty: Red
    • Kindness: Pink
    • Honesty: Green
  • The Keys Stand Alone: After Paul gains the ability to see magic and power in The Soft World, he discovers that he sees different kinds of magic in different colors. However, the color scheme seems to be idiosyncratic to him; for example, he sees the psionic Ringo as bright blue, normal masking magic as one shade of sea green, and masking magic that protects against mind control as another shade of sea green. He wants very much to learn what each color represents but never gets the opportunity.
    • He also tastes energy; lightning tastes like peaches and cream, dragon fire tastes like crunchy apples, and a purple force field tastes like really good grapes.
  • In The Power Within the Founders are dressed in the primary color of the Hogwarts Houses associated with them.

    Films — Animation 
  • Disney:
    • Bambi: During Bambi's fight with Ronno, it's easy to tell who's winning by looking at the colors on their shadows and the background. If Ronno is winning, the background colors are dark green, blue and black. If Bambi is winning, the colors are yellow, orange, gold, and sometimes pink.
    • Aladdin has color motifs based on its desert setting. Blue (water) = good, red (heat) = evil, and yellow (sand) = neutral.
    • The Lion King II: Simba's Pride: Used symbolically. Before the final battle the outsiders trudge through a swamp which darkens their coat's right before facing Simba's pride. Right when Kovu and Nala show up to give their Not So Different speech, the mud has just about been washed off by the rain, enforcing the fact that the two groups really are the same and don't need to fight anymore.
    • The Princess and the Frog:
      • Dr. Facilier wears a black Baron Samedi-esque outfit while Mama Odie wears white, which is the traditional color for voodoo garb. This also fits with the way they represent shadow and light respectively.
      • Purple, traditional hallmark of comic book villains, is part of the Doctor's costume and no-one else, even though it's one of the standard Mardi Gras colors (Purple, Green and Gold).
      • The person who wrote the color script made a conscious decision to include the three Mardi Gras colors: Facilier has purple in all of his scenes (since, of the three colors, purple is the most "unnatural"), the scenes in the swamp with frog Tiana and Naveen are green, and Mama Odie's scenes and Tiana's restaurant fantasies are awash in gold.
    • Wreck-It Ralph:
      • According to the film makers, the characters colored venomous green are the ones who are truly evil. Note that Ralph is entirely green during his Hulk-like rampage through the stands. They were going to color Vanellope that way to signify her glitch status until they figured it made her look like a zombie. You can see what she would have looked like with green skin on the sign in the bakery forbidding glitches from entry.
      • Ralph and Felix themselves may count. Felix is dressed in mostly blue, the color for peace and serenity, while Ralph is dressed in mostly red, the color for intensity and anger.
      • Also, whenever Vanellope glitches, she turns shades of blue. However, King Candy a.k.a. Turbo turns shades of red when he is forced to glitch out.
  • In Barbie and the Secret Door, Alexa's magic is pink and rainbow-colored, while Malucia's is blue and a sickly green.
  • Epic: The rich greens and golds of the forest (the use of yellow contributing to the 'warmness'), versus the cold colour palette and mud-browns of Mandrake and his allies. Also, the brightness of the forest, compared to the relatively subdued colours used in the house.
  • Toy Story 3: Blue is safe (Andy's room, the Butterfly Room, the conveyor belt off switch), red is unsafe (Caterpillar Room, Lotso, incinerator), and sickly green-yellow is corrupted (the vending machine "gambling parlor", the daycare dumpster). Bonnie's color is bright "happy" green.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • As a general rule, absent any other cues like dialogue or geography (and often enough even with them), a rising sun is depicted as red and a setting sun as orange in all films. This is just a cinematographer's convention that's gone back to the early days of color film.
  • In the Brotherhood series of films, the hero always wears white boxers, while all the other villanous characters wear black underwear.
  • In Back to the Future, the DeLorean's LED displays are red for "Destination Time", green for "Present Time", and yellow for "Last Time Departed", in homage to 1960's The Time Machine. In Back to the Future Part III, Doc has made presto logs, color-coded green, yellow and red in increasing order of the amount of heat each produced to make their train run faster, with a corresponding gauge showing when it would happen.
  • Con Air: The prisoners. Normal inmates get Blue, the really scary ones get Orange, and the pants-wettingly scary Steve Buscemi gets White.
  • The Great Wall: Soldiers in the Chinese army wear monochromatic armor, the color of which designates the type of troop they are.
  • Guillermo del Toro's vision for The Hobbit included eight color-coded "seasons" (middle of third paragraph).
  • The Hunger Games: The jackets of the tributes while in the arena.
    • District 1 — Avocado Green
    • District 2 — Rust Red
    • District 3 — Mustard Yellow
    • District 4 — Seastorm Green
    • District 5 — Plum Red
    • District 6 — Tomato Red
    • District 7 — Russet Brown
    • District 8 — Goldenrod Yellow
    • District 9 — Bottle Green
    • District 10 — Foie Gras Grey
    • District 11 — Chocolate Brown
    • District 12 — Coal Black
  • In The Hunt for Red October, different color lighting was used for each submarine's interior to aid the viewer in quick recognition of which submarine it was and to minimize confusion.
  • In John Carter, the otherwise nearly-identical Red Martians of Helium and Zodanga are differentiated by the Heliumites wearing blue capes while the Zodangans have red. This is even acknowledged during the climax when, as Tars Tarkas is about to attack Kantos Kan and another Red Martian, they show him their blue capes and tell him they're Heliumites and, therefore, his allies.
  • Jurassic Park: The first movie uses certain color conventions, according to a fan analysis on the Jurassic Park Legacy website. Dr. Grant, the hero, wears the "hero colors" of red and blue, while Dr. Sattler wears similar but more feminine shades of pink and purple. Hammond, the park's creator, and the one accused of "playing god", wears all white and has a white beard, while Malcolm wears black to emphasize his opposition to Hammond and his "chaotic" nature.
  • In Kamen Rider X Super Sentai Superhero Taisen, Kamen Rider OOO will lend his medals to the Gokaigers, allowing them to transform into OOO's combo forms. With one exception, the general coloring of OOO's combos match up with the Gokaigers' colors (red, blue, yellow, green, and white [standing in for silver]), and they transform accordingly. The exception is Gokai Pink, who instead gets the purple combo.
  • In Logan's Run, the people who lived in the city wore clothes that matched their ages and the color of their life clocks. The sandmen, who were essentially portrayed as being evil, wore black and gray, even when they were in the gym or at home.
  • In The Mark of Zorro, a 1920 silent film, Zorro instructs his allies to ride black horses on their night's mission to rescue some unjustly-jailed prisoners. The soldiers that pursue them conveniently all have light-colored horses, making it easy for viewers to keep track of which band of riders is which.
  • M. Night Shyamalan: The three main characters of the Eastrail 177 trilogy — David Dunn, Kevin Wendell Crumb, and Elijah Price — are subjected to this in their wardrobes and lighting. David is portrayed in dark greens, Kevin in tan orange, and Elijah in royal purple. By the final scene of Glass, prior to which all three have died, these colors have passed to each one's respective supporting character — Joseph Dunn, Casey Cooke, and Mrs. Price.
  • In Star Wars, this tends to overlap with Good Colors, Evil Colors, such as the blue and green lightsabers of the Jedi vs. the red of the Sith (as well as their brown robes vs. black robes) and the silver and red of the Rebellion vs. the blue and black (and white) of the Empire.
  • Top Gun has the heads-up displays in green for the good guys and red for the bad guys. In reality, they were and mainly still are all green, given the behaviour of the high-performance green-screen cathode ray tube displays used to ensure they're readable in bright sunlight. The green displays shown in the film are nothing like accurate representations of a real F-14's HUD in any case, although there's no such thing as a MiG-28, so it's hard to say that this is entirely wrong - but it's highly implausible.
  • Traffic uses different colored filters to distinguish the various locations and storylines. For example, Mexico is yellow, while the politician storyline is blue.
  • TRON:
    • In the first movie, the good guys are blue and the bad guys are red.
    • TRON: Legacy uses this to great effect, though it also plays with it a bit: white and blue characters are considered good guys, but in multiple cases, characters of both colors oppose the protagonist out of circumstance.
  • In WarCraft, the Black Magic fel is green, while more benevolent Azeroth-style magic is blue, yellow, red or purple, and those touched by fel can be recognized by their unnaturally green skin or eyes. Lothar exploits this when he has to check whether Khadgar has been corrupted by the fel.
  • In West Side Story the two rival gangs have different colors to identify them — the Jets (the Caucasian gang) predominantly wear blue, brown and gray (with some yellow) while the Sharks (the Latino gang) predominantly wear red, black and purple (with the occasional pink thrown in here and there). Counts as Truth in Television, since real-life gangs are visually distinguishable.

  • In The Thieftaker Chronicles, every magic user's power is a different color and leaves behind a colorful residue visible only to other conjurers. Ethan, the titular thieftaker, has magic that is a rusty shade of red.
  • Animorphs: Andalite technology tends to be based around the colors blue and white. Yeerk tech (at least that used by Visser Three) is usually black and red.
  • Aurora Cycle: Each of the six specialties of the Aurora Legion is assigned a different colour:
  • In Brave New World society, each caste wears a different color
    • Alphas wear gray
    • Betas wear mulberry
    • Gammas wear green
    • Deltas wear khaki
    • Epsilons wear black
  • Captive Prince: The country of Akielos favours red, while its rival country of Vere favours blue. The lines start to blur late in the series, especially as the Veretian Regent moves to claim Akielos' throne for himself.
  • Chronicles of Chaos: Used in Orphans of Chaos. When using her higher senses, Amelia can see the utility of nearby objects to her or someone else by how brightly they glow with a white light.
  • Circleverse: The Trader people assign colors to aspects of life and follow them completely. Mourners wear all red, children are often dressed in blue to guard against evil, and Trader mages wear head-to-toe yellow.
  • In Divergent, it's very easy to tell who belongs to what faction based on their attire:
    • Candor typically dresses in black and white, reflecting their mindset.
    • Abnegation dresses in grey, rag-like clothing, reflecting their humility and putting others before themselves.
    • Amity dresses in bright colors, usually yellows and reds, reflecting their laid-back, free-spirited nature.
    • Dauntless members can usually be spotted sporting black combat uniforms.
    • Erudite dresses in blue formal attire befitting their intellectual nature.
    • As expected, the Factionless subvert this trope; they dress in whatever they can get their hands on, and it's exactly this lack of uniformity that makes them so easy to tell apart from those in a Faction.
  • Dragonlance:
    • The Towers of High Sorcery actually enforce this trope, as each of the three Orders worships and draws power from one of the three gods of magic which are represented in Krynn's sky by three different-colored moons. Good-aligned mages are associated with Solinari, the white moon; neutral mages with Lunitari, the red moon; and evil mages with the hidden black moon, Nuitari. Mages traditionally wear white, red, or black robes to display their alignment. When Raistlin transitions from neutral to evil in Dragons of Spring Dawning, his robes change from red to black.
    • Subverted in one Dragonlance short story. A knight slays what he thinks is a white dragon, which are Always Chaotic Evil. It turns out, however, that the dragon in question was an albino silver dragon (silver dragons are Always Lawful Good).
  • In Dragonriders of Pern, the dragons are visually distinguishable by gender and caste by their color. Additionally, many of the disciplines have a distinctive color that members of the guildhall wear. Miners, crafters, harpers, and healers each have a distinctive uniform color, with further variations in tone for apprentices, journeyman, and masters.
  • In The Enchantment Emporium, each Dragon Lord has a different highlight for their scales in dragon-form. And while walking around in human-form... the color show in their irises instead (for easy identification, if you don't know their name yet).
  • In Fallen series by Lauren Kate fallen angels who since the Fall have sworn loyalty to Lucifer have wings in the shades of gold, while fallen angels who have sworn loyalty to the Throne have wings in the shades of silver.
  • In The Giver, blue (or at least "pale") eyes are linked to the special Receiving ability.
  • "Harap Alb", a Romanian folk tale, has the Green and Red Emperors. While Green is a wise, old ruler and the protagonist's kindly uncle, Red is a cruel, unstable tyrant, against which the protagonist is warned:
    Harap Alb's father: Beware of red-haired men and especially the bald.
    • In folkloric context, both baldness and red hair are traditionally considered bad omens placed by God to mark dangerous men.
  • In the Harry Potter books Tonks favours her hair bright pink (she can change her appearance at will). In the film of Order of the Phoenix it was changed to purple because the filmmakers had already associated the colour pink with Umbridge. Interestingly in the books Umbridge didn't wear quite as much pink as she does in the film (only her cardigans are described as pink) though it was obviously done to emphasize the Tastes Like Diabetes effect.
    • In Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, the Weasley twins describe to Harry one of their inventions - a Puking Pastille. Biting its orange end will make you vomit, and biting its purple end will make it stop. The rest of their "Skiving Snackbox" candies have the same pattern.
  • Played in The Heroes of Olympus by Rick Riordan. Orange and purple for the Greek and Roman camps, respectively.
  • The Hunger Games: In the 74th Hunger Games, Katniss Everdeen and Peeta wore coal black jackets.
  • Most religions in the Liavek Shared Universe anthologies are identified by color: red for the Way of the Twin Forces, black for the Kin of One Path, white for the Church of Truth, green for the House of Responsible Life, and brown for the Pardoners. There are two more color-coded religions — blue and gold — that have been exiled from Liavek, and one non-colored religion, the Way of Herself. The clergy of any religion are almost always called (Color) Priests.
  • In Lord of the Flies, the main characters are mostly shown to be 'good' or 'evil' by their hair colour - Ralph is blond, Jack is a redhead, and Roger's hair is dark. Ralph is the most civilised of all the boys, while Jack and Roger are more quickly lost into savagery. However, Simon was dark-haired, at least in the book, but this still follows color symbolism. Black doesn't just represent evil. It represents death, foreshadowing his eventual demise. He is a Christ figure, after all.
  • In the Malazan Book of the Fallen, the three Tiste peoples are easily distinguishable by their skin and hair colours. The Tiste Andii are midnight-black skinned and either black or white haired (with the occasional reddish-brown haired individual). The Tiste Liosan are porcelain-white skinned and have hair in shades of blond, gold and silver. And the Tiste Edur are grey skinned, with hair in shades of brown.
  • In Malediction Trilogy trolls of pure blood always have very pale skin and black hair. The more human blood a half-blood troll has, the darker their skin and the lighter their hair.
  • In Our Bloody Pearl, sirens are generally referred to by color upon first meeting.
  • The Reynard Cycle: In Calvaria, you can instantly determine anyone's general profession and rank in society based entirely on the color of their clothing:
    • Children, and people of the service class, wear white.
    • Artisans, engineers, and laborers wear tan.
    • Members of the military wear gray. Non-Calvarians sometimes refer to all Calvarians as "the Grays" due to the fact that they've never seen one who wasn't a soldier of some kind.
    • The blood-guard (Calvaria's State Sec) wear black trimmed with red.
    • The Judges (the law makers and arbiters of justice) wear red trimmed with black.
  • Crimson of his titular series and The Future is Crimson, the spinoffs to Ro Te O. He's a Phantom Thief in the former, a resurrected guy in the latter, hence why he doesn't fit under Color Character.
  • There was a series by Garth Nix called The Seventh Tower featuring a caste system based on the rainbow; the more powerful a particular color in the society's magic system, the higher the rank of the corresponding caste. Everyone owned a crystal with which they could perform light-based magic; any individual could use colors and visit floors of the complex (in which the entire society lived) equal to or lesser than their own rank, but needed special dispensation to go higher in the pecking order without actually going to the trouble of earning an increase in social station. In the lowest floors was a caste of servants who weren't given a color at all, who were regarded as being not wholly dissimilar to lepers.
  • The Stainless Steel Rat's Revenge. The planet of Cliaand is completely militarized and every person on it has a uniform with a color appropriate to their job.
  • Lampshaded by Diana Wynne Jones in The Tough Guide to Fantasyland, wherein she explains that a Genre Savvy character can always identify which characters are (or will turn out) good, evil, traitorous, possessing magical powers, or lost royal heirs upon first meeting them by the colour of their hair or eyes (or combination thereof).
  • Uniform color and the colored trim of capes and such are used to identify rank in the Tsorian military in Under Alien Sky. Traditionally the offspring of military personal wear a similar outfit of the same color, since they share the rank and privilege as the parent they choose to raise them.
  • Villains by Necessity: Played straight and subverted. Sam wears black, Mizzamir wears white. The subversion lies in that Mizzamir is a deluded wizard who only cares about Light and Dark, not right or wrong. Sam is an assassin, but other than that quite a decent fellow.
    • Sam also notes that assassins take this to the logical extreme of wearing black undergarments, the better not to give away one's position if one's outer garments tear on an assignment and, as he puts it, "show a white bunny tail." At the start of the book, Sam has also had his naturally blond hair dyed black for the same reason.
  • The Wonderful Wizard of Oz: In the original book, the land of Oz is divided into coloured areas: Munchkinland is blue, Gillikin is green, the land of the Winkies is yellow, and Quadling country is red. The first paragraphs of the book describe Kansas as an unforgiving praire, where the sun and the wind make the houses, the fields and the grass gray, and so gray are uncle Henry and aunt Emma, who never laughed. The only exception to the dreariness is Dorothy's dog Toto, who is also shiny black.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Awake: Has two realities, with the tone of the camera distinguishing them for the audience and a colored wristband distinguishing them for the protagonist.
  • Breaking Bad gets a lot of mileage out of this trope, to the point that the wiki even has a page on it. Skyler usually wears blue, reflecting her morality and loyalty and her eventual sadness in the resulting tragedy. Jesse is yellow, reflecting his optimism and cowardice, as well as his status as the show's eventual moral center. Walt wears green, putting him between them and reflecting his greed and envy, and later starts wearing black as he starts Jumping Off the Slippery Slope. Hank wears red and orange, showing off his angry demeanor and putting him in opposition to Walt. Marie always wears purple, putting her opposite Jesse and a number of other characters who wear yellow involved in the meth trade. Walt's meth is always referred to as sky-blue, implying its purity. The list goes on.
  • Charmed (1998):
    • Played for Laughs briefly, when Paige in Season 5 tries to colour-code the pages of the Book of Shadows with sticky tabs for more efficient research. Piper is not amused.
      Piper: [ranting] "Beings of evil are red, creatures of good are white." Oh, yeah? Well, what's a Bunyip? Because it's not good or evil, so what the hell color is that? [finds the page with a red and white tab] Oh. Well that's confusing.
    • In the season one episode "Which Prue Is It Anyway?", Phoebe tries to color-coordinate a trio of Prues (Real Prue = black sweater, Clone 1 = pink sweater, Clone 2 = blue sweater).
  • Clue: The main cast members usually wear something of their piece's color.
  • Community: In an episode parodying Brave New World, students of Greendale start wearing color-coordinated outfits based on their social status, as determined by their rating on a social networking app.
  • Criminal Minds: There is an in-universe example in the episode "Magnificent Light". The bad guy is a man suffering from synesthesia, a neurological condition where two different senses are experienced at the same time. He can actually see the words as they are spoken by someone else and the colors in which these words appear to him indicate if the person is good, evil or even a liar. In his case, white means good, red means evil and orange means deception.
  • The Defenders (2017):
    • Red and black are the primary colors of The Hand, best seen in their ninja outfits, which are black with red inner-lining (and the inverse for some members, like Nobu). One way to tell if someone who seems like a good guy might come into play in the Hand's schemes is to look at their costumes for these colors.
      • Daredevil (2015): The color scheme of Elektra's main fight outfit is black with red highlights, and foreshadows the reveal that she is a Black Sky, the ultimate weapon of The Hand. In The Defenders, she sports an all-red version of her comics costume.
      • Iron Fist (2017): A viewer who's already seen Daredevil will catch on that Bakuto's compound is another faction of the Hand right away, as he and most of his students wear the Hand's colors in red shirts, black pants and black leather jackets.
    • Within the first few episodes of the show, there's a different color motif for each main character: reds underline all of Matt Murdock's scenes, blues and purples are the primary colors in Jessica Jones (2015)' scenes, golds and yellows are the primary colors in Luke Cage (2016)'s scenes, green is the primary color of Danny Rand's scenes, while white is the color that underlines all of Alexandra's scenes.
    • The logo for the Royal Dragon has red, green, yellow and blue, the colors of all four Defenders, and symbolizes the first place where the four of them work together as a team. The blue even briefly disappears from the sign when Jessica briefly deserts the team.
  • Daredevil (2015): In a non-Hand example, even when Matt Murdock isn't in his Daredevil suit, the red and black colors of the suit follow him around in his civilian life as he always wears blood-red glasses, and sometimes red-black colored neckties.
    • Season 3 episode 10 "Karen" sees Matt have to fight Dex in his church, which is completely bathed in red lighting.
  • Degrassi: Community School introduces uniforms in Season 10 of the eponymous show, color-coded by year (Grade 12-blue, 11-red, 10-purple, 9-yellow). This holds the next year, apparently for the viewers' convenience - in a real school, it would make more sense for the rising students to keep their present colors with blue rotated to the incoming freshmen.
  • Doctor Who:
    • Because the TARDIS is blue, that colour is often associated with the Doctor, especially Ten, who wore a blue suit as often as his brown one and whose sonic screwdriver had a blue light. Thirteen wears even more blue than Ten.
    • The Fourth Doctor's coat would change depending on the "genre" of the particular serial. The yellow-brownish one was more for adventure, red for action, and grey for horror or mystery.
    • In the Fifth Doctor's first season, the boys are in yellow and the girls are in purple.
    • As the Seventh Doctor was growing Darker and Edgier, his coat was changed from a light whitish colour to dark brown.
    • Since the Ninth Doctor, the Time Vortex is blue if the TARDIS is going backwards in time, and red if it is going forward.
    • The Eleventh Doctor's bowtie was red if the episode took place in the future, and blue if it was in the past. Also, his coat, much like the Seventh Doctor, became a much darker brown after the events of "The Angels Take Manhattan".
    • The Daleks have been traditionally colour-coded according to their positions in the Dalek hierarchy: The armour of leadership-level Daleks was usually distinguished by black, gold or chrome markings, with the Supreme usually being predominantly black in color. The Emperor's Guard typically had black domes, while Dalek Sec — the leader of a secret order known as the Cult of Skaro — had an entirely black casing. In "The Stolen Earth"/"Journey's End", the Supreme Dalek was red. In 2010's "Victory of the Daleks", a new hierarchy was introduced:
      • Scientist — orange
      • Strategist — blue (later a darker, metallic navy)
      • Eternal — yellow
      • Supreme — white
      • Drone — red (later a darker, metallic burgundy)
    However, the "New Dalek Paradigm" met with much fan ridicule, to the degree that bright candy-coloured Daleks — which were initially intended to forevermore replace the old — never became the norm. When next Daleks needed to be a major threat, a few of the New Paradigm Daleks were sitting in back as a Continuity Nod (in an episode where many Dalek variants, some going back to The '60s, cameoed) and out of the way of the plot, and most Daleks looked like they have for most of the revived series; later appearances have consisted entirely of the usual Daleks (which are bronze-coloured). The next time a Supreme Dalek was seen, in "The Magician's Apprentice"/"The Witch's Familiar", it was the older red model instead of Paradigm white.
  • Fringe: The opening credits distinguish which universe the episode is in. Blue=main universe, red=parallel universe, amber= rebooted and connected universe.
    • This is how the universes came to be called the "blue-verse" or "red-verse" by fans.
    • Gray signified time jump episodes.
  • Game of Thrones:
    • The families are colour-coded by hair. The Lannisters are blonde, the Baratheons are black-haired, the Targaryens are platinum and pale because they're very descended from Valyrians, the Greyjoys are light brown-haired and the Tullys are reddish brown-haired. This is a blessing to the viewer trying to keep track of the Loads and Loads of Characters, where the politics between families is the main theme. This also actually plays a part in the plot considering hair color isn't the only thing being passed down. Gendry's hair color is decidedly Baratheon Black. It's what clued Ned in to him being one of Robert's many bastards, and later (collectively with all the other bastards) clued Ned in to Joffrey not being Robert's at all.
    • Soldiers' uniforms: Stark troops wear grey and brown, Lannisters wear black, red and gold, Baratheons wear light brown and orange, Arryns wear light blue, Greyjoys wear dark Cambridge blue, Martells wear orange and cream, and wildlings wear grey.
    • Invoked by the Night's Watch and the Kingsguard, who wear black and white respectively in place of heraldry to signify their rejection of any prior allegiance.
  • Grey's Anatomy: Scrubs colors within Seattle Grace: Light blue = intern/resident, dark blue = attending, turquoise = nurse, peach = dermatology. To identify people from other hospitals: orange = Mercy West, red = Seattle Presbyterian.
  • Lady Dynamite takes place in three time periods, so to keep it from being confusing, each time shift has a title card and a different colour treatment; The Present looks normal, The Past is totally oversaturated and cartoony and Duluth is washed out and blue to reflect the sadness of that period.
  • Merlin: Merlin and Arthur usually wear blue and red respectively, as a near-literal example of Red Oni, Blue Oni. Spirited Young Lady and Rebellious Princess Morgana wears bright, jewel-like colours such as reds, blues, purples, and greens, whilst the gentler Shrinking Violet Guinevere wears almost every shade of pastel imaginable: lavender, peach, pink, and light blue. By series four, the bad guys (Morgana, Agravaine, Helios, and Shade!Lancelot) wear black, whilst those with magical powers are usually delinated by the colour green, particularly Mordred and the other Druids, who wear green cloaks.
  • Orange Is the New Black:
    • Orange uniforms mark new inmates, who then switch to khaki after being assigned a bunk.
    • In Max, B block wears a light pink, C block wears navy blue, and D remains in khaki.
    • FCI Ohio inmates wear dark green.
    • ICE in Season 7 generally wear orange, with anyone who committed a felony wearing red.
  • Person of Interest: The Machine's view uses symbols to sort what it (and the audience) is seeing. White brackets indicate a person being scanned and/or monitored, and they lose the bracket when the Machine decides they're not relevant to current investigations; white brackets with red corners and cardinal marks indicate an irrelevant threat with lethal intent; yellow brackets designate individuals who are aware of the Machine's existence (i.e. Finch, Reese, Nathan); solid red brackets indicate relevant threats or threats to the Machine; blue brackets indicate government operatives assigned to deal with relevant threats; white diamonds are boats; green triangles are planes; and a black bracket with yellow corners and cardinal markers indicate an individual designated as an 'analog interface' - someone capable of communicating with the Machine directly.
  • Power Rangers: Every Power Ranger will always wear at least one item in their Ranger color. It was most egregious in the original series, where no one seemed to own anything that wasn't in their Ranger color. Former Rangers will usually dress in neutrals like black, gray or brown. Family members or love interests of specific Rangers will also often dress in their relevant Ranger's color. Every now and then, you'll get a side character, like Emily in Zeo, who dresses exclusively in orange.
    • It's been lampshaded a couple of times. In Power Rangers Dino Thunder, when Tommy becomes the Black Ranger, he mentions that he's got to go shopping - there is a distinct lack of black in his closet. In Power Rangers S.P.D., whenever Bridge, the Green Ranger, uses his Psychic Powers, which are not part of his Ranger powers, the effect is green. In a later team-up episode, it's revealed that he is now Red. His psychic aura has also somehow become red.
    • Surprisingly averted with Karon in Power Rangers Lost Galaxy. Even after becoming the Pink Rangers, she continued to dress in mostly black clothes.
  • Quantico: At the FBI Academy, FBI Agent trainees wear light blue long-sleeve shirts, while analyst trainees wear dark blue polo shirts. The agents are also given bright red plastic guns to wear on their hips around school instead of actual matte-black firearms.
  • Revolution: The explosive-filled log in "Soul Train" is made of considerably darker wood than the other logs in the pile. Overlaps with an Inverted Trope (in live action) of Conspicuously Light Patch.
  • Scrubs: The medical doctors wear blue scrubs and the surgeons wear green. Nurses most often wear pink or purple and orderlies are in maroon.
  • Sesame Street: In the late '80s, Random House's compilation cassettes were colored green. That changed in the early '90s, when Random House's duplicator, Rank Video Services America, experimented with disposable cassettes which were colored green, and so the Sesame tapes went back to black to avoid confusion.
  • Sons of Anarchy: While it's not prominent, the gangs display their own colours. Samcro wears a lot of blue, Mayans have green, and the One-Niners purple.
  • Stargate Atlantis: Uniforms are colour coded in a similar manner to Star Trek. Sciences are in blue, medical are in yellow, command is in red, and military are in black.
  • Star Trek:
    • In the original series, the Starfleet uniform colors for the different divisions were Command Yellow, Science Blue, and Operations Red. In Star Trek: The Next Generation, though, Command and Operations switched colors.
    • On TNG, Cadets wore a variation on the standard uniform, but with the colors reversed: division-colored shoulderpads on black jumpsuits. This later became the attire of "lower deck" drones who labored within space stations and other departments; no glamorous Galaxy-class explorers, they. Cadet uniforms are usually grey, although they too underwent changes.
    • Also for many of the major races and nations, who are associated with particular colour schemes:
      • The Federation is a rich blue (on star charts, on their seal, in their warp plasma) supplemented by other light pastel shades and grey (for ship bulkheads).
      • The Klingons are red (on star charts, on their banner, their graphic displays and ship controls, their warp plasma, their transporter effect). They also prefer red lighting aboard their ships and in their buildings.
      • Romulans are deep green (on star charts, on banners and display graphics, their warp plasma, their transporter effect). Their ships also have a deep green hull colour.
      • Interestingly Romulans have green blood (copper-based). This means the ships are blood colored.
      • Cardassians are usually yellow-ochre or pink (both colours were used for their weapons - pink in their first few appearances, later yellow, their transporter is yellow-ochre, on star charts they're either yellow or pink). Their ship hulls are ochre. Their graphics and display panels use orange/beige and green, colours that sometimes appear on their cultural emblem.
      • The Dominion is purple (their warp plasma, on star charts; their graphics are purple and green).
      • Ferengi warp plasma and ship hulls are orange.
      • Andorians, to no-one's surprise, like white and blue, along with a pale beige.
      • The Borg favours black and a sickly green.
      • Bajorans uses gold-tan and dark red.

  • Japanese idol group Momoiro Clover Z wears different colors for each members and match to their gimmicks, also acts an shout to Super Sentai. This was such a big factor (out of many) to their success that their management company began assigning color-coding to all their other main idol acts to various levels of consistency and success.
  • Japanese all-girl rock band Scandal used to be colour-coded quite often. This has dropped off since the STANDARD album (2013) was released, however. Seen here.
    • HARUNA: Red
    • TOMOMI: Yellow
    • MAMI: Green
    • RINA: Blue
  • K-pop group Rainbow has seven members, each corresponding one of the colors of the rainbow.
  • Supertramp's Album Crime of the Century has this. The lyrics sheet is color coded for each of the two singers. Roger Hodgson is white, and Rick Davies is yellow.
  • When RCA Victor first released 45rpm records in 1949, they used vinyl of various colors for each of the musical genres they sold. This color-coding was abandoned within a few years, probably for cost reasons. The colors, in case you're curious 
  • Each of the Wiggles wear different colors so that people can tell them apart easier. Greg dresses in yellow, Jeff dresses in purple, Murray dresses in red, and Anthony dresses in blue.

    Myths & Legends 
  • If an animal is important and doesn't have extra features (Pegasus, Sleipnir, Cerberus), it will most often be a certain color. White is a particularly strong giveaway, as many cultures believe that white animals have magical properties.

  • Banzai Run: The targets for the racers correspond to their own colors and names.
  • Game of Thrones game features LED lights that change color to match the current situation, such as turning the playfield green during Blackwater Multiball or white for "Winter Is Here". In regular play, the lighting will change colors according to which Houses have been gathered by the player.
  • Indiana Jones (Stern) uses different colors for each of the four films: Last Crusade is blue, Temple of Doom is red/orange, Raiders of the Lost Ark is yellow, and Kingdom of the Crystal Skull is green.
  • Indianapolis 500 uses orange, yellow, blue, and green to distinguish between the four main shots, assigning an opposing racer and a set of game modes to each color.
  • RoboCop's Prime Directives in Data East's 1989 pinball are colored red, green, and yellow; completing each directive allows the player to arrest the corresponding criminal.
  • In Stern's Spider-Man table, the villains' targets and indicators are color coded for each one — green for the Green Goblin, yellow for Sandman, dark blue for Venom, and red for Dr. Octopus.
  • Sega Pinball's Starship Troopers uses different colors to identify the various Bugs that need to be destroyed on each planet — yellow for Warriors, blue for Plasma Bugs, green for Hoppers, and red for Tankers.
  • In Transformers, the various characters and indicators are color-coaded for the corresponding factions, using "Decepticon violet" and "Autobot crimson". The playfield is thematically divided into two color-coded halves, and the "Combo" Limited Edition version has each half of the cabinet similarly colored.
  • Total Nuclear Annihilation allows stacking ball saver levels, indicating how many are reserved with a flashing light of a specific color - red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and finally purple - on the appropriate lane.

    Print Media 

  • Cool Kids Table:
    • The Ryutama system used in Small Magic asks that each character have a hero colour. Stege is brown, Maggie is green, and Janus is blue.
    • Along with character class, colour is the other part of the Splat in Josh's "Super Mario RPG' system and determines the Standard Status Effects that a character can do in . Red is fire (burn), green is lightning (shrink), pink is love (sleep), yellow is sand (dizzy), purple is shadow (fear), light blue is ice (freeze), and regular blue is star (silence). For the game Here We Gooooo! itself, Dario is yellow, Yoshi is green, and Crania is purple.

    Pro Wrestling 
  • All Japan Pro Wrestling: The Four Pillars in the 1990s each had a signature color: Mitsuharu Misawa was Green, Kenta Kobashi was Orange, Toshiaki Kawada was Yellow, and Taue was Red. Jun Akiyama would later take on Blue.
  • WWE Raw is the red show, and WWE SmackDown is the blue show.
    • As of 2016, the titles are also color-coded with either the faceplate or leather of the belt matching its show's respective color.
  • The "poison mist" used by many wrestlers, especially in Japan. According to Japanese Kayfabe, only certain wrestlers can do it because they have a special gland that allows them to produce the mist. Most wrestlers can produce only certain colors of mist, and each has its own effects: The most common, the green mist, blinds the opponent, the red mist both blinds and burns, the blue mist puts the opponent to sleep, the yellow mist paralyzes, and The Dreaded black mist is a career ender.
  • CHIKARA's Xyberhawx 2000: Sylverhawk was silver, Razerhawk is gold, Nytehawk is dark purplish-blue, and Danjerhawk is crimson.
  • CHIKARA's The Nouveau Aesthetic: Still Life with Apricots and Pears has red on theirnote  mask, Ursa Minor in the Night Sky had blue on his.

  • In Rain Quest, nearly every character's dialogue is written in a different color, although additional text effects are used for characters who share a color:
    • Nina's text is gold (yellow).
    • The lightning bolt's text is purple.
    • The comet's text is normal (black), but italicized.
    • Stanley's text is cinnamon (brown).
    • Hummer and the other hummingbirds' text is green.
    • Mayor Ferdinand's text is normal, but bold.
    • The airplanes' text is cinnamon and bold.

    Tabletop Games 
  • BattleTech: This is in effect on a general scale, insofar as the Inner Sphere is considered. The "accepted" color pattern for the five great houses is Davion yellow, Kurita red, Steiner blue, Marik purple, and Liao green. Comstar possessed no planets beyond Earth, but were associated with the color white. Later additions to the map, such as the Free Rasalhague Republic and the St. Ives Compact, appear in a shade of teal and a sort of yellow-green, respectively. When the six invading Clans appeared in the Inner Sphere, color variants became necessary. Clans Smoke Jaguar and Steel Viper received dark and light shades of gray, respectively. Clan Wolf space was denoted in brown, and Clan Ghost Bear in white. Clan Jade Falcon, naturally, received a brilliant green, where Clan Nova Cat was shown in black. While these were the 'stereotypical' colors, this did not always apply to the units from those particular factions, however.
  • Dungeons & Dragons and its, well, dragons:
    • For the longest time, one could easily distinguish between good and evil dragons by whether or not they were metallic and shiny (good) or vividly monochromatic (evil). This was eliminated in 4th edition, and then brought back to a lesser extent in 5th, though it still gives an idea of whether or not a dragon is more likely to be more "social" or more predatory.
    • Played with as early as "Basic" D&D, in which dragons still had distinct alignments by color but whites and blues were neutral, and where a later boxed set introduced more powerful similar-looking but always differently-aligned "gemstone" dragons in a rather obvious attempt to mess with expectations. (This incarnation also had only one "metallic" dragon type — gold (lawful), with its chaotic gemstone counterpart being amber).
  • Pathfinder:
    • Chromatic and metallic dragons use the same color-coding as in D&D — gold dragons are lawful, benevolent and protective, silvers are righteous crusaders, bronzes are introspective scholars, brasses are gregarious socialites, coppers are heroic but flighty, whites are animalistic brutes, blacks are violent sadists, greens are scholastic and regimented, blues are cunning manipulators and reds are monstrous engines of destruction.
    • Cave worms — monstrous, burrowing worms found in the depths of the world's global cave system — are divided into a number of specialized types distinguished by color. Besides the "basic" purple worm, there are the aquatic azure worm, the crimson worm found in volcanic caverns, the white worms that burrow within glaciers and the grey worms that lurk in necropoles and boneyards.
  • GURPS Infinite Worlds, lists being entirely white as one of the signs that an animal may be a parachronozoid (in-world jargon for "naturally capable of moving between worlds"), based on the folkloric convention of white animals having magical properties.
  • In Must Be Tuesday, character sheets are adorned with a slider, one half red, the other blue. A character on the red end of the slider is well accustomed to the events of a mundane life, while a character on the blue end dabbles in the supernatural. Going too far in either direction is not fun.
  • In Mystery Date the different outfit cards are coordinated by color. So the formal dance outfit has pink cards, and the winter sports outfit has blue cards.
  • New Horizon: In a meta example, the game requires two differently colored twenty-sided dice. The rulebook labels them White and Black; you can only get criticals on the black dice.
  • Paranoia:
    • Alpha Complex is colour coded for your inconvenience. It's almost certain that to get anywhere interesting, you'll have to cross an area outside your colour clearance. (Paint is strictly rationed and outside your clearance.)
    • Downplayed in Alpha State, where all comrades are Red (but some are more Red than others).
  • Psionics: The Next Stage in Human Evolution
    • All of the medical and psionically active drugs fall into this trope. If the play remembers their color combinations and shades, they'll be able to identify them consistently.
    • The book itself switches off between red, blue, and green color schemes, but the sections on pisonic talents are color-coded to the talent trees. Telekinetic talents are blue, pyrokinetic talents are red, and psychokinetic talents are green.
  • In board games, using color to distinguish sides is so pervasive that it's easier to note exceptions. For instance, in shogi, the pieces of the two sides are identical and distinguished by which way they're pointing.
  • Warhammer 40,000:
    • Rather than use the traditional symbols ascribed by the Codex Astartes for squad designation, the Blood Angels Chapter of Adeptus Astartes use a system of colour-coded helmets with red representing battleline units, yellow for close support, blue for fire support and gold for veterans.
    • The orks belive different colors have different effects on their vehicles, and thanks to the way their psychic powers work, they do. Most famously, Red Ones Go Faster, while black is touch, blue is lucky, etc. Fanon adds orange and purple as making things extra sneaky (have you ever seen an ork painted purple and orange? Of course not, that's how sneaky they are).
  • Yu-Gi-Oh!: Each of the monsters in the Qliphort Archetype has a Colored Sphere (Red/Pink, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Purple, Black, Gray, White, and two-tone). Each of these spheres are cased on the card frames (two-tone referencing pendulum, yellow for normal monsters, etc.) and they are all found on the Sephirot structure. These spheres were the Ball Joints of El-Shaddoll Grysta which were attracted to the structure as seen in Saqlifice.

  • Extensive in Chess. For example, in the 2008 concert production, Soviets and emigres wear black, Westerners wear white, loose cannons wear both. In that show,
    • Anatoly starts out wearing a black suit and off-black shirt. He defects towards the end of Act I, and in Act II he wears a dark grey suit with white shirt.
    • Freddie wears pure white throughout, but the show makes much of him being the archetypal American - 'naked unprovoked Yankee aggression', as Florence puts it during "Press Conference". He's loyal to the US by being loyal to himself.
    • Florence wears black in the first act, because she's an emigre. She takes off her black jacket late in Act I. In Act II she wears a white dress, symbolising her alignment with defector Anatoly, who has become more white himself; however, the dress has a large black logogram on it, symbolising her increasing commitment to achieving her own ends.
    • Svetlana wears pure black throughout. She's Soviet, but not an active Soviet agent like many of those wearing black. She is, however, a tool of the Soviet Union throughout, and powerless to resist that.
    • Walter wears black in the first act, where he functions only as a European anchor and executive for Global Television, playing up Anatoly's niceness and Freddie's bad-boy status - "loyal" to the Soviet Union. In the second act, however, his role as a CIA officer is more obvious, and he switches to American white - but with a flash of pink and a subdued gold tie, pointing up the self-interest which is demonstrated by his easy, friendly cooperation with Molokov - they ultimately want the same things.
    • Molokov wears black throughout, but with a white shirt and red tie. He's loyal to his country, but as "The Soviet Machine" demonstrates, he sees the whole scenario as an opportunity to gain standing and influence in the KGB.
    • The Arbiter wears black and white all show, but is also always prominently wearing blue, a colour not associated with either faction. He is self-interested, but also disinterested - unaligned, effectively without class or creed. The colour coding is further assisted by the fact that the Arbiter is President of FIDE - he is the highest official of world chess. He may be self-interested, but his "self" effectively is chess.
  • In Hamilton, Hamilton goes through a few color changes throughout the show, he is first seen as one of the ensemble members wearing white at first then switching to brown as a student, then joining Washington's army wearing blue and once he's a statesman he switches to green then as he gets older, he wears black until the duel.
  • In modern productions of Romeo and Juliet, Capulets are traditionally in red, Montagues in blue, and the Prince's house in earth tones, yellow, or purple.

  • Starriors: The two factions of Starriors adhere to the following color schemes: blue/white/silver/beige for Protectors, black/red/purple/gold for Destructors.

    Video Games 
  • This is a common feature of team-based games. As exemplified by Red vs. Blue, multiplayer games divide players between two or more teams with each having the same color, usually red and blue. It also occurs in real-time strategy games, each player will have their own color to differentiate their units, often otherwise identical to those of other players, shown with that color. In the single-player modes of such strategy games, the player is often shown in blue and the enemy in red, unless the color is otherwise significant.
  • Antichamber: The color of the blocks used in any given room hint at the gun required to solve that puzzle.
  • Ao Oni: The titular oni's bright bluish-purple colour means you will spot it the second it enters the room. Unless it's dark...
  • In Arc Style: Baseball!! 3D, some teams have all or nearly all their players sport a certain hair color, even wacky ones: blue for the Mackerels, purple for Rhinos and red for Mammoth.
  • Assassin's Creed uses this trope extensively. In all games, the Eagle Vision paints allied characters blue, enemies as red and targets as yellow. In addition, each faction wears clearly distinctive colors so you can tell them apart at a glance. This applies to their minimap icons as well, when it's relevant.
    • Assassin's Creed III: The British wear redcoats while the Colonials wear blue.
    • Assassins Creed IV: The British wear red once again, the Spanish wear yellow, while the briefly seen Portuguese forces wear blue.
    • Assassin's Creed: Rogue: The British are red, the French are blue and the Assassins are orange.
    • Assassin's Creed: Odyssey: The Spartans are red, the Athenians are blue (this even goes for the clothes of NPCs), and Cultist soldiers are Purple.
  • In BEMANI games, difficulty levels are almost always color-coded.
    • beatmania IIDX: Beginner (Green), Normal (Blue), Hyper (Yellow), Another (Red), Black Another
    • DanceDanceRevolution:note  Beginner (Blue), Basic (Yellow), Difficult (Red), Expert (Green), Challenge (Purple)
    • GITADORA: Basic (Blue), Advanced (Yellow), Extreme (Red), Master (Purple)
    • jubeat: Basic (Green), Advanced (Yellow), Extreme (Red)
    • Popn M Usic: Easy (Blue), Normal (Green), Hyper (Yellow), EX (Red)
    • Reflec Beat: Basic (Green), Medium (Yellow), Hard (Red)
    • Sound Voltex: Novice (Blue), Advanced (Yellow), Exhaust (Red), Infinite (Green)
  • The Binding of Isaac has "Champion" enemies, which are bigger, stronger, more resistant, and have special abilities depending on their color.
  • BioShock and its sequel:
    • A traffic light color scheme is used for the security turrets, bots, and cameras: red ones are hostile and green ones have been hacked to be on your side. The lights on the Big Daddies' suits' portholes are similar: yellow light means it's neutral, green means it's hypnotized, and red means it's hostile.
    • BioShock 2's multiplayer, curiously enough, changes this to red, white, and blue to indicate if a turret is hostile, inactive (the default state until someone hacks it), or on your side. Vending machines gain a light as well to hint as to whether they've been booby-trapped.
    • Ammo types are also differentiated mainly by different colors on their packaging; in Minerva's Den this extends to the physical color of the laser cells when you have your laser equipped. In the case of the chemical tanks, the specific colors are also meaningful: red for napalm, blue for liquid nitrogen, yellow for electric gel.
  • BlazBlue: The color of a super flash indicates what kind of move your opponent is about to unleash:
  • The Borderlands Series: Used as a way for Notice This: Anything that can be interacted with (chests, switches, quest items) has a green light or aura. Considering Pandora is a barren wasteland for the most part, greenery really stands out. While the sequels are much more colorful, brightly colored chests still stand out.
    • The weapons and equipables like shields have Color-Coded Item Tiers and follow the mnemonic "When Grandma burps, Patrick obeys": White, Green, Blue, Purple, Orange. White and Green are the average grade (white being useless garbage quickly), Blue being better than them and sometimes being one of a kind items, Purple being better than better, and Orange being legendary items.
      • Borderlands 2 adds a few more ranks with Magenta being for the new "E-tech" weapons, weapons that use what was learned from Eridian technology, and Cyan for "Pearlesent" weapons in New Game+. Captain Scarlet and her Pirate Booty adds Pink for its Seraph items, which are powerful but controlled by their drawbacks or gimmicks.
      • Finally, Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel! removes Magenta and Cyan and changes Pink to "Glitch weapons" in the "Claptastic" Voyage DLC
  • Bureaucracy, all villains and obstacles will be denoted by whatever you told the game your least favourite colour is.
  • cactus and Mr. Podunkian's game Dungeon uses a simple system for its Retraux graphics. The player, the walls, and all harmless decor are white. Deadly objects and enemies are red. In the last room, you come upon a bloody dagger... and since blood is red, it kills you as soon as you touch it, which is the game's "proper" ending.
  • Chalk: The game's enemies in have to be color-coded, as each type has a vastly different way of defeating it. It also serves as a hint system for bosses, who need to be fought the same way as normal enemies of the same color.
  • Cellophane overlays in the arcade version of Circus gave each row of balloons a different color. This also provided a handy key to the scoring: each blue balloon on the top row was worth twice as many points as a green balloon from the middle row and five times as many as a yellow balloon from the bottom row.
  • Crash Team Racing: Crash's kart is blue, while Cortex is red, Coco is pink, N. Gin is bright violet, Tiny and Oxide are green, Dingodile is olive, Polar is aqua, Pura is dark purple, Ripper Roo is orange, Papu Papu is yellow, Komodo Joe is dark yellow, Pinstripe is black, Fake Crash is blue-gray, N. Tropy is light blue, and Penta is white. Likewise, in Crash Nitro Kart, Team Bandicoot's karts are blue and white, Team Cortex is red and gold, Team Oxide is yellow and green, Team Trance is green, and Velo and his champions' hoverbikes are purple with bits of red, blue, and gold.
  • In Creepy Castle, the boss Moody's gimmick is that his color will dictate his attack. Attacking him while he's red will trigger a nasty counterattack.
  • In Crystal Story, weapons with stats that are geared towards magic have blue text, while weapons with stats geared towards melee have red text.
  • All parryable objects in Cuphead are colored a bright neon pink to make them noticeable at a glance.
  • In Deadfall Adventures, shootable targets and buttons are shiny gold, light-activated switches are blue, and the three types of treasure are coloured differently (gold, silver and eerie blue) depending on which stat they upgrade.
  • Donkey Kong:
    • Donkey Kong 64 was practically built around this idea. If anything important pertained to a certain character, one simply had to look at the color to figure out to whom the task belongs. For Donkey Kong, it was yellow; there was red for Diddy, blue for Lanky, purple for Tiny, and green for Chunky.
    • Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze: In addition to the red balloons, you can go to Funky's shop to buy the green balloon from the Nintendo 3DS port of Donkey Kong Country Returns and a brand new blue balloon that extends your Oxygen Meter. DK Barrels also change color to indicate which Kong is within.
  • Dwarf Fortress features dwarves that are different colors depending on their jobs, the result in your main meeting room being a mess of brown, white, grey, blue, etc. smiley faces.
  • Dynasty Warriors: Shu - Green, Wei - Blue, Wu - Red, Jin - Teal.
  • In Ensemble Stars!, the different units tend to be associated with one or two particular colours, though it's more of a guideline and there is some overlap:
    • Trickstar is red and blue; as both of these are common colours they are sometimes associated with orange, from Subaru's hair
    • fine is white and gold
    • UNNDEAD is black and purple
    • Knights is navy blue, as well as black and white due to their chess motif
    • Ra*bits is white and light blue, the colours of a sailor uniform
    • 2wink is bright blue and pink
    • AKATSUKI is red and black
    • Valkyrie is maroon
    • Switch is lime green and white
    • MaM is brown
    • Ryuuseitai is the one outlier - as a Sentai themed unit each member is naturally associated with their own colour (red, blue, green, yellow, and black), so as a whole they tend to be associated with multicolour rainbows.
  • In Evolve all the hunters are color-coded by class. Red is Assault, Green is Trapper, Blue is Medic, and Yellow is Support. On the monster's side, each monster has a distinctive armor glow: Goliath is red, Kraken is blue, Wraith is white-pink, behemoth is orange, and Gorgon is pale green. Overall, the monsters are identified by an orange dot when viewing the map in replays.
  • In order to make this Fantasy Strike more accessible to beginners, a lot of more obscure Fighting Game mechanics such as invincibility frames and frame advantage are color-coded:
    • A character flashing white is invulnerable, so you can't hit them at all.
    • A character flashing blue has Super Armor. You can hit them, but their attack will still happen.
    • The visual effect for blocking an attack changes color depending on who will recover first:
      • A blue flash means the attacker will recover first and can defend against a counter-attack or launch a second attack.
      • A yellow flash means both players will recover at the same time.
      • A red flash means the defender will recover first and can launch a counter attack.
  • 50 Cent: Blood on the Sand: ammo pickups are colour-coded based on the weapon type—blue ammo is for close-range weapons, yellow is for machine guns, and red is for special weapons like snipers and rocket launchers. The enemies you fight are also colour-coded in this way to tell you what kind of weapons they're equipped with.
  • Final Fantasy X: Arguably, the stark contrast between Tidus (light hair, dark skin, heavy use of yellow and black in his clothing) and Yuna (dark hair, light skin, heavy use of white and blue in her clothing) represents the stark differences between the two. Additionally, each character is represented by a specific color on the Sphere Grid. Tidus is light blue, Yuna is white, Wakka is yellow, Lulu is purple, Kimahri is dark blue, Auron is red, and Rikku is green.
  • Final Fantasy Tactics has the player party and enemy party (for humans/humanoid characters anyway) colored differently from each other so you can tell who was friendly and who was a foe; generic friendly characters are usually colored in blue and green clothing while enemy unites usually wear clothing in red and purple. The color coding concept carries on to the sequel as well.
  • Fire Emblem: Your units have blue outfits, your enemies have red outfits, and neutral characters have green outfits. Especially noticeable when an enemy defects to your side mid-battle, whereupon they change clothes. Yellow is a wild card; in Fire Emblem: Genealogy of the Holy War it represents neutral units beholden to no faction, in Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance and Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn it represents partners you can give indirect orders to, and in Fire Emblem: Three Houses and Fire Emblem Warriors it represents a second faction of enemies hostile to both you and the red guys.
  • flOw: Enemies change color based on their state: a white enemy creature is unwounded or calm, a blue one is wounded, and an orange one is attacking.
  • In Forza Motorsport 4, the cars each AI driver drives are the same colour, when a car's colour can be chosen.
    • For instance, M. Rossi's cars are [almost] always red, as close to Rossa Corsa as possible.
  • Frosty Nights: The four boy-eating Snowlems are distinguished from each other by the colour of their clothing. There's Jolly Red, Fat Blue, Crazy Green, and Yellow.
  • Gears of War: The COGs tend to have blue lights on their armor and the Locusts red.
  • In Ghost Trick, the colour of the ghost world varies from ghost to ghost. With Sissel, it's red, with Missile, it's green, and with Yomiel, it's blue.
  • Grand Theft Auto 2: With so many rival gangs to tell apart, they now have to wear bright clothes. You will also meet a few NPCs dressed in lime green or red: the former likes to jack cars, much like the roving punks in Grand Theft Auto III. The chap in red will approach you, shout "GIMMIEYOURMONEY" and run off in the opposite direction with your cash.
  • Grand Theft Auto V: Franklin is represented by green, while Michael is blue and Trevor is orange.
  • Gruntz: Your gruntz are orange. Enemy gruntz cover a wide palette, each color denoting a different behaviour.
  • Guild Wars color-codes everything. Professions are color coded, and skills for that profession have icons of predominantly that color, and the bosses of that profession have an aura of that color, and so on. PvP and the factions in Factions use the classic red vs blue setup. In some PvP maps, they even color-code the objectives to group them!
  • In Hard Reset, the explosive things are colored orange, while parts of the environment that form large electrical arcs when shot are labelled cyan.
  • In hets, the player character is blue, and so is the Man in the Cave and the helping fairies you can get from him. Enemies are all red, the projectiles you and some enemies fire are either green or turquoise, the portals are white, and the statues can be of other colours, like yellow or purple. All of these will also cast off halos of their colour, and change colour themselves if they're under a different halo (i.e. enemies will go pink in the portal's white glow, and purple inside your own.)
  • John Wick Hex: Pretty much every important object on the screen is highlighted in white, be it bullet trails or bodies of the enemies and their weapons when highlighted through an overhead obstacle. However, the stats of the living enemies are written in black on their pinkish info boxes that pop up when you pause time. Likewise, the full segments of your ammo and health counters are white, whereas the emptied ones are pink.
  • Kessen II: Once again, Shu's officers dress in Green, but Wei and Wu switched. Wei officers in this game wear Red and Wu's army dress in Blue.
  • The Legend of Zelda:
    • Both games for the NES (The Legend of Zelda and Zelda II: The Adventure of Link) has the golden shelled cartridge instead of grey cartridge like most NES games, and the box art has a hole to show gamers that cartridge is gold. Aditionally, red is used for things that favor Link, while blue favors his enemies. Most of the upgraded items are red, and special items like the Power Bracelet are also red. Weaker enemies are red, while stronger ones are blue. The first two dungeons are colored blue, and there are no red dungeons. Finally, Ganon himself is colored blue, but the ashes shown after his death are red.
    • The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time has certain colors corresponding to Locations, Elements, Races etc. that are all aligned.
    • In Hyrule Warriors, blue troops are allies, red are enemies, and yellow are "rogue" (either unaligned or a second enemy force, depending on the map). The map markings are also based on opacity rather than hue: small troops are nigh-transparent blips on the map, troops led by a minor officer as more solid dots, and Captains as a solid dot with a border.
  • In LEGO Dimensions, year 1 figures have cyan Toy Tags, while year 2 figures have orange.
  • In Majin and the Forsaken Kingdom, each of majin’s powers corresponds to a colour: yellow for lightning, blue for wind and orange for fire. Feeding it fruits of these colours will permanently increase the power of these abilities. Conversely, enemies that block elemental powers with their shield have a gemstone of a corresponding colour included in the centre of the shield.
  • Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story has several bosses and minigames where Mario and Luigi can each only deal with half of the threats—for instance, a scrolling shooter-style minigame where each of the things to be shot can only be shot by a specific brother. Mario and Luigi wear red and green, respectively, so whatever Mario targets is red and whatever Luigi targets is green. This also extends to menus, interfaces and such - Mario has red, Luigi has green and Bowser has orange.
  • Inside the main Mass Effect series, the Paragon and Renegage moralities are associated with blue and red, respectively. It is especially shown with endings of the games of the main series, with the colour motif of the chosen morality being displayed in it.
    • In Mass Effect 2, the merc groups are distinguished from one another by their armor color and the races of its members: the Blue Suns have blue armor and are staffed by humans, turians, and batarians; the Blood Pack has red armor and consists of krogan and vorcha; and Eclipse uses yellow armor worn by humans, salarians, and asari.
    • Likewise, the life bars are color-coded: purple for biotic barriers, blue for tech shields, yellow for armor, red for health.
    • Cerberus' logos and vehicles often possess an orange color scheme, while as of the third game, the Systems Alliance is represented by a blue one, likely to contrast with Cerberus. The Normandy SR-2 gets recolored as such between the games when it comes into the Alliance's possession from Cerberus, as do many of the Alliance variants of ships seen previously used by Cerberus in the second game (such as the Kodiak shuttle). Even the menus switch from blue, to orange, to blue again throughout to the trilogy to represent whatever faction Shepard is working for at the time.
    • In Mass Effect 3, you may get a red, green, or blue ending.
  • In Mercenary Kings, the elemental versions of enemies and bosses are color-coded. Incendiary ones have orange-shaded uniforms, caustic ones have purplish or greenish tinge, electric is yellow and cryogenic is icy-blue.
  • Doors in the Metroid series are color-coded based on what weapon the player needs to shoot them with to open them; the standard colors are blue for any weapon, red for missile doors, green for super missile doors, and yellow for power bomb doors. The exceptions are Metroid II (the game is totally monochrome) and Metroid Fusion (colored doors work on a security-level system, and open to any weapon once you have the clearance for them).
  • Need for Speed 2015 has different neighborhoods use different street light hues.
  • This is how Nintendo DS and Nintendo 3DS game cards are differentiated: DS cards are dark gray, DS cards with infrared sensors (used for Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver, Pokémon Black and White, and Pokémon Black 2 and White 2) are black, DSi cards are white, and 3DS cards are light grey.
  • The Nintendo GameCube had three colors for their memory cards, each one indicating the maximum storage capacity: gray cards could store up to 59 blocks (4 Mbit) of memory, black cards could store up to 251 blocks (16 Mbit), and white cards could store a whopping 1019 blocks (64 Mbit) at most.
  • In no-one has to die., the plot unfolds entirely through the chatlogs, and each character has a color to match their handle. Steve is Light Green, Christina is Orange-Red, Troy is Grey-White, Lionel is Lavender, and Visitor is Rock Blue.
  • In Bungie's Oni, hit sparks are color-coded to indicate the health of whomever is taking damage: green hit sparks represent a healthy combatant, yellow indicates having approximately half their health left, and red indicates near-death.
  • In Osmos, you control a primordial cell and the gameplay consists of assimilating other cells. The player-controlled cell is bright blue. The cells that are small enough to be absorbed are blue-coloured, or at least have a blue ring around them, while ones that will absorb you are red in colour.
  • Pikmin: There are seven main subspecies of these adorable creatures whose special abilities are often defined by their color, though other times the color is simply meant to differentiate them. For example, Red Pikmin are immune to fire, Yellow Pikmin are immune to electricity, and White Pikmin are immune to poison. Purple Pikmin, who have no particular resistance, are known for their brute strength while Winged Pikmin (pink), who otherwise have no other abilities, have tiny wings which allow them to fly.
  • In Pixel Dungeon, the potions follow a strict 1 color = 1 potion type code. Which means that is you have a crimson potion and it is a Potion of Healing, then you can know for sure that all healing potions are crimson and all crimson potions are healing potions
    • What makes it not so convenient is that you initially don't know which color is which effect, and the association is randomly set for every new game. So maybe now those crimson potions are not Potions of Healing but Potions of Liquid Fire and you should really not drink them.
  • The PlayStation 2 used this to help differentiate between the CDs and DVDs that its games came out on: CDs were blue while DVDs were silver. The use of blue also differentiates CD-based PS2 games from PlayStation games, which used black CDs.
  • Pokémon:
    • The three starters of each Gen are Green, Red, and Blue.
    • Pikachu is officially the Yellow of Gen I, but implicitly the Yellow of every Gen because of the Anime, despite how many expies it has.
    • Also, each of the 18 types has a color associated with it:
    • In a large number of cases, Pokémon in general will ascribe to a certain colour scheme. Fire types tend to be red or orange, Water blue, Poison purple of varying shades, Electric blue or yellow, Ice white or light blue, Ghost grey, Dark black, Dragon blues and blue-greens (at least in part), Ground brown and dusty orange, Rock brown and grey, Normal brown or beige, Grass green, and Steel grey. Psychic, Fighting and Fairy are more varied in general, and Bug types often have colourful shells or wings, as real-life arthropods do, though there are a lot of red, orange, and green Bug types, they aren't prevalent enough.
    • And each of the version mascots, except in Black and White, matches its version color. For the ones that aren't obvious by the name, Crystal is purple/light blue, Diamond is baby blue, Pearl is pink, and Platinum is gray, red, and gold.
    • This even extends to most prominent NPC trainers, particularly Gym Leaders and Elite Four members, who will often dress predominantly in colors that correspond to the type that they specialize in (Water trainers wear varying shades of blue, Fire trainers wear red/orange, Electric trainers wear yellow, etc.).
  • In Prison Architect, the colour of the prisoners' shirts determine the security level. Grey means minimum security, orange means normal security, and dark orange means high security.
  • In Rayman 3: Hoodlum Havoc's trailer cinematics and box art, using the power-ups only changes the appearance of Rayman's fists in a way that would be reasonable for the power-up itself (spikes, missile launcher, lockjaw, etc). In-game, however, picking up any power-up will also give Rayman a differently-colored appearance to more easily show to the player which power-up they're currently using. This is lampshaded when Globox scolds Rayman for 'dressing up in silly costumes' in several parts throughout the game.
  • In Rescue on Fractalus!, ace pilots (worth more points than regular pilots) wear purple helmets instead of the usual white. Aliens' heads are green, allowing you to tell apart real pilots and alien impostors. On later levels, however, the aliens get savvy and begin wearing white helmets.
  • In Resonance of Fate, weapons, damage displays, and damage is displayed in either blue or red, depending on if they do Scratch or Direct Damage, respectively.
  • The Hard version of Rockman No Constancy colors Mega Man green rather than blue.
  • Saints Row has each gang in each game represented by a different colour, so one knows who's who on the streets.
    • Purple: Third Street Saints
    • Yellow: Vice Kings/Ronin
    • Red: Los Carnales/Brotherhood/Morningstar
    • Green: Sons of Samedi/Luchadores
    • Blue: Westside Rollerz/Deckers
    • Orange: Ultor Corporation
    • In Saints Row IV areas in the Steelport simulation controlled by the Zin are red-orange while areas controlled by The President are blue.
  • Skies of Arcadia has its six oddly colored Moons that also correspond with elements, as well as the continent under it's environment:
  • Sonic the Hedgehog:
    • Each of the characters' fur/feather/body color tends to follow them everywhere. An interesting case is Shadow, whose fur is Black with Red highlights: he is usually associated with Blacks and Grays or Dark Red, but for some reason, his attacks are all orange.
    • In the game Sonic Heroes, the twelve playable characters are divided into four teams of three members each. Each team consists of a speed character, a flying character, and a power character. Most obstacles are color-coded to tell the player which team member is intended to clear that obstacle with blue for speed, yellow for flying, and red for power. These colors are based on the fur colors of the "main" team featuring Sonic as the speed member, Tails as the flying member, and Knuckles as the power member.
    • In the Sonic Boom games, each obstacle is colored similar to the character meant to interface with it. Homing Attack targets and Dash blocks are blue; air vents are yellow; rough rocks and craters are red, balance beams and swing poles are pink (Rise of Lyric only). Boomerang targets (Shattered Crystal only) are uncolored.
  • In The Spectrum Retreat, the basic puzzle element are gates that will only let you through if your phone is carrying a matching colour, which you can get from various cubes scattered around the area.
  • In Spyro Reignited Trilogy, each game is given differently-colored menus on the game select screen and in-game: Spyro the Dragon (1998) is purple, Ripto's Rage! is blue, and Year of the Dragon is orange.
  • The platform game Star Guard, also with Retraux graphics, uses simple colors as well. You and your allies are green. Deadly things are red.
  • Star Wars: The Old Republic gives each advanced class an icon above the user's name. With the exception of Jedi Consulars and Sith Inquisitors, their color corresponds to the color of their mirrored advanced class's icon:
    • Lavender - Jedi Guardian and Sith Juggernaut
    • Red - Jedi Sentinel and Sith Marauder
    • Cyan - Jedi Sage and Sith Assassin
    • Indigo - Jedi Shadow and Sith Sorcerer
    • Dark green - Commando and Mercenary
    • Lime green - Vanguard and Powertech
    • Yellow - Gunslinger and Sniper
    • Orange - Scoundrel and Operative
  • In the Super Mario Bros. series, you can tell Palette Swapped enemies/generic species behavior based on color:
    • The Lumas: White (Luma), Black (Polari), Purple (Lubba), Red (flying), Orange (Co-star), Yellow (launch star), Green (green star), Blue (Lumalee Lumabop), and Pink (Hungry Luma).
    • Koopa Troopas and Paratroopas: Green (walk in straight line for Troopas, hop aimlessly for Paratroopas), Red (walk back and forth for Troopas, fly up or down or side to side for Paratroopas), Blue (like a red one but faster and kicks shells when out of their shells), and Yellow (follow Mario and flashes if they enter into a shell when they don't have one).
    • Goombas: Brown (on dry land), Blue (in caves), and Gray (in castles).
    • Piranha Plants: Green (hides in pipes when Mario/Luigi is near it) and Red (comes out of pipes even when Mario/Luigi is near it, but will not come out if Mario/Luigi is on top of it).
    • Cheep Cheeps: Red (faster, can jump out of water) and Greennote (slower, always in water).
    • Bros.: green (Hammer and Sledgehammer), Blue (Boomerang), Red (Fire), Cyan (Ice), Purple (AFHB) and Orange (sumo)
  • In Super Smash Bros. Wii U/3DS, Shulk's Monado Arts are coded by different colours alongside their respective kanji symbols in order to make it easier to tell them apart from each other. "Jump" is green, "Speed" is blue, "Shield" is yellow, "Buster" is purple, and "Smash" is red.
  • The Talos Principle: The sigil colors indicate both their purpose and the approximate (but by no means accurate) difficulty in acquiring them.
    • Green sigils are for unlocking new level hubs, and are easy to get.
    • Yellow sigils are for unlocking equipment, and are moderately more difficult.
    • Red sigils unlock levels of the central tower, and are much more difficult.
    • Gray sigils unlock secret endings, and require mastery of puzzle mechanics to complete them.
    • Stars unlock some additional puzzle zones, and require quite a bit of non-linear problem-solving to obtain.
  • The characters in Team Fortress 2 work for two companies called RED and BLU [sic]. It's no coincidence that the Administrator and her assistant both wear purple. Gray Mann, his robots, and the classic mercenaries wear gray (though in-game his bots wear blue due to confusion from testers). Gray's daughter Olivia wears a dark green. Merasmus and The Bombonomicon both emit a bright green glow. The Horseless Headless Horsemann and Monoculus glow violet. Even with all the unlockable weapons and modifiable accessories, the game has never allowed you to wear the colors of the opposite team (not counting disguised Spies).
  • In-Universe the shadowlings colors from Telepath RPG indicate their age going from red to purple to blue and finally to green, but for gameplay purpose, every shadowling healers is blue because blue is the color of the shield powers which serves as healing spell.
  • Terraria: The clearest distinction between the four Celestial Pillars and their associated enemies/equipment is color. Orange is used for Solar, teal for Vortex, sky blue for Stardust, and pink for Nebula.
  • In the Tomba! series, Items are split into 3 colors in the select item menu: Green, Blue, and Pink. Green Items are equippable weapons and clothes. Blue items are regular items such as the Buckets and lunch boxes. Pink Items are special automatic use items such as the Evil Pig Bags and the Treasure Chest Keys that can only be used by talking to the right NPC or doing something in the right location.
  • Tomb Raider III: The Save Crystals for the PS1 version emanate a bright blue light, making them extremely easy to spot from a distance and during the darker portions (which there are a lot of) each level. They can even be seen from the other side of walls they are placed too close to.
  • Touhou games have red items for power, blue for score, green for Smart Bombs (except in 10 and 11, where bombs were tied to power, and green items increased the value of blue items), and purple for extra lives.
    • After Mountain of Faith, red fairies give you power, and blue fairies give you points.
  • In Trauma Center, there is a type of GUILT called Tetarti. It can come in groups of 3 with three, four, or five colors. Their color is shown when they appear and then they turn gray. To kill them, you must inject each one with the serum that has the same color.
  • Treasure Planet: Battle at Procyon: Ships originating from from each faction all follow a similar colour scheme.
    • Imperial ships have brown hulls, yellow sails, and blue accents.
    • Pirate ships have dark brown hulls, red sails, and red and yellow accents.
    • Procyon ships have brown and white hulls, white sails and green accents.
    • Civilian ships have brown hulls, white sails, and yellow accents.
    • Ironclads, due to their steel hulls and lack of sails, are entirely grey.
  • In the Vietcong series, anti-communist forces will always wear camouflaged (ERDL/Tigerstripe), lime, or brown uniforms while the NVA wears dark green and tan uniforms. Some VCs in the first game (or all of them in the second) wear black pajamas.
  • In the card game War of Omens the 4 factions correspond to a colour. Vespitole/Green, Daramek/Red, Metris/Blue, and Endazu/Purple (which overlaps with Supernatural Is Purple)
  • In Wario World, the 8 treasure chests and their corresponding buttons are Color Coded For Your Convenience. The 5 colors for the Spritelings also count.
  • In the Wing Commander series, Terran Confederation fighters are generally painted in bright colors, typically silvers and greens for the first two games and bright grey for the remaining (except for the Excalibur and Dragon superfighters, which have dark-colored hulls). Kilrathi fighters are generally ochres and darker colors. And Border Worlds Militia fighters are gunmetal grey.
  • Largely averted in Wizorb. The multi-coloured blocks and boxes will usually drop different things depending on the part of the level they're in. This includes the Poison Mushroom items.
  • In World of Goo, different species of goo balls have different colour. It'll be difficult to tell them apart without this.
  • In World of Warcraft, each class is given a color that is used for their name in chat, their map icon, their raid profile, and their name on most websites:
    • Beige - Warrior
    • Pink - Paladin
    • Light green - Hunter
    • Cyan - Mage
    • Lavender - Warlock
    • Pale yellow - Rogue
    • Dark blue - Shaman
    • White - Priest
    • Orange - Druid
    • Red - Death knight
    • Teal - Monk
    • Purple - Demon hunter
  • In The World Ends with You, it would be easier to list the things that AREN'T using this trope. The most prominent use of this trope comes into play when scanning for Noise. Red symbols are your typical encounter, orange symbols are usually tied to a mission objective, green are Pig Noise, blue are Boss Noise (most of them only show up in the post-game), and black are Taboo Noise. Black symbols will also float towards you in order to start a battle.
  • In XCOM: Enemy Unknown, the type of a weapon can reliably be known by the color of the blast. Firearms are brownish white, lasers are always bright red, and plasma is always bright green. (There are a few other weapons that don't fit this scheme, most of them are white or gold and are uncommonly powerful.) It is of course completely unrealistic (bullets are not usually tracer rounds, lasers that would be suitable as personal weapons would probably be infrared and therefore invisible, and plasma is just very, very hot stuff so it would appear a very bright blueish-white should it somehow be weaponized.)
  • In Wibble Wobble, all of the lethal hazards are coloured red.
  • The Wii U came in a white model and a black one; a white Wii U could store 4 GB of internal memory (which, given the size of some of its games, isn't exactly spacious) while a black Wii U could store 32 GB.
  • Xenoblade and its sequel has one for enemies levels and how dangerous they are.
    • Black - The enemy is at least 6 levels lower than yours. The enemies accuracy and evasion skills are heavily nerfed as well as their damage output but you gain very little EXP, AP and SP.
    • Blue - The enemy is 3-5 levels lower than yours.
    • White - The enemy is equal to you. Accuracy and evasion stats aren't changed. This difficulty is recommended for beginners.
    • Yellow - The enemy is stronger than you by 3-5 levels. Now you start to get punished to fight them. This difficulty is recommended for advanced players.
    • Red - The enemy is stronger than you by 6 or more levels. These fights are almost impossible to win without the correct set up required because you cannot hit the target. You gain 1.5x the Experience as you would for defeating a white enemy.
  • Each of the main characters in Style Quest has their speech bubble edged in a different color which generally corresponds with something they're wearing. This means the shy girl gets green to match her shirt, the Perky Goth gets purple to match her dress, etc.
  • The Japan-only Nintendo Power flash cartridges for the Game Boy and Super Famicom were white, compared to the usual light gray.
  • Anytime Sunless Sea brings up the color red in the context of food or as part of the phrase "rich and red," it's referring to cannibalism. And by extension, the Drowned Man.
  • In Candies N Curses, enemies use one of three elements. The element used is indicated by the color of their border - Blue border means physical, yellow means fire, and green means poison.

    Web Animation 
  • In Smash King, Bowser's various Ascent Mode forms indicate what powers he will likely use.
  • Web Animation,/An Adventure Of Sheep And Chicken: Each character's dialogue is colour-coded according to their color(ie. being red, Sheep's dialogue is enclosed in a red speech bubble
  • Battle for Dream Island:
    • The three teams in are the three primary colors. The Squashy Grapes are Green, the Squishy Cherries are red, and Another Name is blue.
    • Averted in the second season, where none of the teams are given an official color.
    • This comes back in season 4, where each of the 8 teams has its own color (Death PACT - black, A Better Name Than That - blue, Team Ice Cube - white, Free Food - red, The Losers - yellow, iance - pink, Beep - green, Bleh - gray).
    • All the items the teams require for challenges are also color-coded.
  • The villains of the show "Cheat Commandos" from Homestar Runner are actually named Blue Laser.

  • Invoked in Adventurers!, where a (probably ice) dragon painted himself red to make the adventurers think he was a fire dragon and thus immune to all their fire weaponry. It worked, and they just gave up.
  • Deep Rise makes heavy use of colors, both for conversation, and going so far as to color pronouns to clarify to whom these refer.
  • The Black Brick Road Of OZ's witches all have a corresponding color which they seem to share with the Country they rule (for example Pepper's color is yellow and Bastille's is violet).
  • Homestuck: A bunch of things have associated colours:
    • Celestial Bodies - Derse has purple, Prospit has yellow, Alternia's moons are green (tied to the felt) and pink. The Green Sun is the same shade of green associated with Lord English. The Cherubs' planet is colored red by a red sun.
    • Groups - The armies of Derse and Prospit have black and white respective due to Chess Motifs being in effect; the Felt (including Doc Scratch and Lord English) all have the same shade of green.
    • Realities - Kids' and Trolls' universes respectively are depicted as red and blue (a motif tied to Sollux's bifurcation quirk and red and blue eye/ glasses). Different versions of Sburb in different universes are different colors as well, green for the pre-scratch Earth, purple for Alternia, and red for post-scratch Earth.
    • Aspects - Blood players have brown and burgundy god-tier costumes, Breath players wear cyan and light blue, Doom players wear emerald and forest green, Heart players wear magenta and pink, Hope players wear white and gold, Life players wear light green and beige, Light players wear yellow and orange, Mind players wear teal and aqua, Rage players wear light and dark purple, Space players wear black and white, Time players wear red and maroon, Void players wear royal blue and navy.
  • Hue Are You: There are three factions: Red, Blue, and Grey. These are the only colors you can see at first within the comic, plus brown, as it is done from the view point of what the robots can see. These are revealed to have meaning in the dreams Build-a has.
    • Red Meaning appears to represent hard work and self reliance based on the red dream door
    • Blue Meaning appears to represent creativity and beauty based on the blue dream door
    • Brown Meaning appears to represent danger and self preservation based on the brown dream door
    • Grey Meaning appears to represent safety and neutrality based on the grey dream door
  • Imp: Humans are red and imps are blue. Besides that, Celina seems to be associated with lime green and her imp with cyan.
  • Inner Dialogue: The inner monologue has blue text in order to distinguish it from the main character's dialogue.
  • In Iron Crown, all the main factions play this straight. Isandar's mercenary brigade is in warm grey and red (presumably for the warlike connection), anyone related to Chandera's dictatorship in blue and a cooler grey, and the divine order of the Judges in white and gold.
    • Also noticeable when Diane, the protagonist, picks up a jacket from Isandar's crew and discards the blue schoolgirl outfit from before. Her early concept art has both.
  • Once the game in Larp Trek begins in earnest, out-of-character panels have a grey background while in-character panels have colored backgrounds. Each character is eventually given a single, consistent color, too.
  • In Nimona the good knight Goldenloin wears a majestic gold and white armor while villain Blackheart dons black and red. (In reality, their roles are not that simple.)
  • Penelope vomiting a rainbow mixed with Cheshire Cat Grin and Losing Your Head.
  • Schlock Mercenary gives us an in-universe example, with Lt Shodan's suspicion that a bunch of new recruits charging ahead and blazing away with their guns were prevented from shooting one another only because they were wearing the same color.
  • Starting in the second volume of Serenity Rose, important characters have coloured hair in the otherwise mostly black-and-white comic. Furthermore, sorcery is generally coloured to show that it is abnormal to the world around it and also to help identify who made it.
    • Sera has Blue hair and stuff she conjures up is usually green.
    • Vicious has bright pink hair and her magic tends to radiate a matching shade.
    • Stiletto has orange hair and her magic is blood-red
    • Tess has bright red hair, and is so far the only non-witch to have such an eye-grabbing colour.
  • In Stand Still, Stay Silent, there is a correlation between the religious beliefs of the six main characters and their hair colours, with only one of the pairs being actually related. The Finnish pantheon followers (cousins) have ash blond hair, the atheists have a more golden blond and the followers of the Norse pantheon both have red hair.

    Web Original 
  • The main characters of Antlers Colorado are each assigned a specific color on the cast page, and these tend to carry over into the bonus art and chapter banners. It's not unusual for each character to be illustrated with a halo of their respective color.
  • In Elcenia, dragons' colors indicate their magical abilities. In addition to breathing fire of their color, reds gets improved firebreathing and fire resistance, greens get magical empathy, blues are better shapeshifters, violets can breathe underwater, blacks get improved senses, and whites fly better.
  • TV Tropes: The normal wiki has a white background, YMMV has a blue one, Sugar Wiki has pink, and Darth Wiki has black.
  • An in-universe example for Twisted Cogs. All the garzona and studios are identifiable by their colors.
  • In The Falcon Cannot Hear, each of the five major factions in the Second American Civil War ends up nicknamed with a color — the American Soviet Republic, being Communists, naturally are already dubbed the Reds. In response, the fascist coalition led by Huey Long starts referring to itself as the Whites, in reference to the anti-Communist side in the Russian Civil War. Meanwhile, the democratically socialist Provisional Government is referred to as the Blues, Douglas MacArthur's military government is the Khakis, and the agrarian Continental Congress is the Greens.

    Web Videos 
  • The lead characters in Bite Me! are always dressed in the primary colors, Mike, Jeff, and Greg in yellow, blue, and red respectively.
  • Funday Night Gaming does this whenever it's reasonably possible in-game, but always on video thumbnails and in corner antics. The colors were chosen based on the clothing on their Minecraft skins.
  • Colour selection in film is discussed in this episode of Renegade Cut.
  • Noted by Tobuscus in his TRON: Legacy trailer parody.
  • In their Grand Theft Auto Online races, each of the Sidemen usually drive vehicles in a specific colour:
    • Behzinga is red.
    • KSIOlajidebt used to be hot pink, but now he goes with black. To differentiate between him and TBJZL, KSI's T20 has extra yellow side colours and green rims.
    • miniminter is white.
    • TBJZL is black, though he sometimes changed to hot pink whenever custom cars/bikes aren't allowed to avoid confusion between him and JJ.
    • Vikkstar123 is race yellow, for a reason. He also had a habit of driving purple Blazer ATVs.
    • wroetoshaw is light blue, since he regularly wore light blue jumpers. His T20 has a darker shade of blue.
    • Zerkaa was orange, but in 2018, he switched to green due to Sidemen associate Wizzite taking orange as his colour. Prior to that, he used green in minigolf games.
  • Movie reviewer Jeremy Jahns uses color to distinguish his videos. Red background? A review. Pretty much anything else has a blue background.
  • In Sky Williams' thumbnails, there are colored clouds that mean different things. A black cloud means the video focuses on a dark subject matter. The other colors are based on a "rarity system" similar to what's found in Blizzard Entertainment games. White is "common," blue "rare," purple "epic," and orange "legendary." In practice, they denote the amount of editing and effort put into the quality of the content, meaning that a "common" video might merely be a League of Legends session and a "legendary" video might be a full-blown comedy skit. The clouds are described in more detail on the subreddit.

    Western Animation 
  • Avatar: The Last Airbender does this with eye colors. Though it varies and there are definitely exceptions, in general each nation is associated with a particular eye color. Blue eyes are the signature of the water tribes, green eyes are the signature of the Earth Kingdom, yellow/golden eyes are the signature of the Fire Nation, and gray eyes are the signature of the air nomads.
  • Towers in Code Lyoko glow different colors depending on who is controlling them at the moment.
    • XANA - Red
    • Jeremie - Green
    • Uncontrolled - Blue
    • Franz Hopper - White. Also used for inactive towers on Lyoko in later seasons, which is either a continuity error or Fridge Brilliance.
  • Dexter's Laboratory - Mee Mee and Lee Lee (Dee Dee's friends) wear green and purple versions of her outfit.
  • G.I. Joe - The good guys shot red laser beams and the bad guys shot blue ones. If a good guy picked up a bad guy's weapon and started would switch colors.
  • H2O: Mermaid Adventures: Each of the girls has an individually coloured tail as a mermaid: purple for Cleo, red for Rikki and orange for Emma.
  • Hong Kong Phooey: When a criminal disguises himself as Hong Kong Phooey to claim the rewards offered to the real one, the viewers can always tell who's who because the real one wears a red kimono and the false one wears a black one.
  • SpongeBob SquarePants - The three of the main characters who lives on Conch Street are presented in the primary colors; SpongeBob (yellow), Patrick (pink, which is a shade of red), and Squidward (blue).
    • Also presented among the three Krusty Krab workers, where Mr. Krabs replaces Patrick.
  • Star Wars: The Clone Wars: Republic-affiliated characters wield blasters that fire blue bolts, and Separatist-affiliated characters, as well as criminals and mercenaries, fire red bolts. Mandalorians fire yellow bolts. Then, it got tangled up:
    • In "Mystery of a Thousand Moons" the vulture droids R2 controls in the plan to destroy the superweapon have their eyes turn green when he takes control.
    • Bounty Hunter Embo shoots blue bolts in his first appearance, where he and the other bounty hunters he's working with team up with Jedi Anakin, Obi-Wan and Ahsoka to fight pirates. In his later prominent appearances in the Deception and Clovis arcs, he's working for the antagonists and thus fires red bolts.
    • "Revival" takes this to G.I. Joe levels: Sith Lord Darth Maul persuades part of Hondo Ohnaka's pirate gang to work for him, leading to them fighting the faction still loyal to Hondo. The pirates affiliated with the Sith fire red bolts while Hondo's pirates fire blue bolts. Later on, Hondo persuades the traitors back to his side and they all attack the Sith, with everyone's weapons firing blue, including those of the traitors who were firing red. Fortunately, this is the only instance of such blatant colour-changing weaponry in the series.
  • Thomas the Tank Engine: In the TV series, the Skarloey Railway engines are different colors, while in the Railway Series, they were all red. This is because the producers didn't want to confuse young children with similar looking characters.
  • On Wild Kratts, Martin always wears blue and Chris always wears green. This carries over to their activated Creature Power Suits, making it easier to keep track of who's who when they're using animal forms. On the rare occasions when the female team members don a Power Suit, Aviva's suit and animal-forms are always purple, while Koki's (save her blue Blue Jay form in the Christmas special) are orange-to-brown.


Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): Color Coded For Your Convenience


The Many Colored Deaths

Not only is the Red Death dressed in all-red, but the other incarnations of death wear similar robes but in different colors; White, Yellow, Gold, Blue, Violet and Black.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (1 votes)

Example of:

Main / ColourCodedForYourConvenience

Media sources:

Main / ColourCodedForYourConvenience