Traffic is a slight variation on the match-three style game. In fact, there really is no matching.
When I started designing this game, I was really not planning on yet another Pipe Dream/Pipe Mania clone. I had something else in mind. Something that is now very elusive.
In my mind’s eye, the original game had less roads and more signs. When I play tested that, there were not enough roads. So I added roads and removed signs. The interesting element was supposed to be the car. It was going to intelligently drive the course you set up. In the original concept, there was a cliff, too.
As of the last play test, the player could swap two tiles. After three swaps, the car was supposed to start driving. Unfortunately, it sometimes took more than three moves to setup a move for the car.
I tried to rescue the game. My wife and I board gamed it. We added the element of gas, traffic lights, icy tiles, cost to move across a tile. We added everything but fun!
In the end, I got a nice framework for writing tile based games. As for the game, well, it will sit in a traffic jam of my own making, waiting for inspiration to set it loose.