Pit: Review

Pit Board Game

OVERVIEW

Our Rating:

It's time to realize your dream as a stock trader on the floor of the stock market. You know what that means, right? You have to see/trade away what you don't need and acquire what you do need.  You better be quick, loud, and aggressive if you want to complete your set in this (blind) commodity trading game. Be the first to ring the bell and cash in the sweet points. Read on to see our full review of Pit.

Pit was recently featured in our
Best Party Games List

KAITLYN'S REVIEW

My Rating:

Likes

  • Loud and exciting
  • Quick rounds
  • Easy to teach
  • Great with lots of players

Dislikes

  • Basic version doesn't have a bell
  • Not much strategy involved

Intro/First Impressions

I'm going to keep this review short and sweet because that's exactly what this game is. Short and sweet, and loud and crazy. A friend brought this over to our house one night, he had been raving about how much fun it is. We typically start off our board game nights with a few hands of a quick game, coup, bang, something of that sort. So we were excited to give a new game a shot.

Thoughts

Pit can be played with 3-8 players, the more players the better, and is perfect for any group setting. Its awesome for people who aren’t too into boardgames but like to have fun, and also for a quick switch up for your hardcore gaming group. You can teach people how to play very quickly, maybe five minutes top, which is one of the things I love about Pit.

The idea behind the game is that you and your friends are traders looking to corner the market on one of the eight commodities. Don't worry you don't need any knowledge of trading to play!

To start out you take out as many commodities as people playing (4 players, 4 commodities). Each commodity is worth a different number of points but they all have 9 cards. Shuffle them up and deal nine cards to each player. If you bought the basic version of Pit, all you will have are the cards. If you bought Pit Deluxe however, it comes with a bell. We only have the basic version but we have played the deluxe version and for the few extra dollars i'd recommend it, unless you have a spare bell lying around. There's something about hitting the bell to start and end the rounds that makes it more fun to me.

The dealer will then open the market by hitting the bell and this is when things get crazy. All at once everyone starts trading cards to try to get all nine of one commodity. The way you trade is by yelling “I've got 3, I've got 3” or”3,3,3” (or however many of one kind you have up to 4). You don't reveal what you are trading though, just how many of one item. You then wait for someone else to say “I've got 3” and you switch cards with that person.

As you can imagine, with so many people yelling at once it gets pretty loud. I don't recommend this game if your kids are light sleepers. Now you can only trade if your cards are of the same commodity. For example you can't trade 1 oranges card and one sugar card together. Once you have all nine of one commodity you hit the bell and yell Pit, and you are the winner!

If you want to make it a bit more official you can keep track of the winners score each round, and the first player to get to 500 points wins the whole game. Rounds in Pit are quick, only a couple minutes usually.

There are also some other ways you can play to up the difficulty if you would like. There is 1 bear card and 1 bull card in the box. To use them two players will be dealt 10 cards instead of 9. The bull card acts as a wild. So if you have 8 of the same suit you could ring the bell and say bull corner which scores you the original value on the card. If you happen to have 9 of a kind and the bull, you say double bull corner and get double the points! But don't rejoice so soon if you were dealt the bull card, if you have him when a round ends and you were not the winner, he is worth minus 20 points.

I love this aspect, it makes it exciting. You have to decide whether to keep the bull and get some extra points possibly or get rid of him because you might be in the negative at the end. The bear card is always a bad card to have. No matter what he is worth minus 20 points if you have him in your hand. If you happen to be the poor soul that ends up with both the bear and the bull its minus 40 points for you. These cards also add a twist in that you can trade them singularly, together, or with any other cards you are trading.


We have a few different ways that we like to play Pit that aren't in the rule book. The first thing is we like to say you can trade any number of cards of one commodity but you can't split them up. So if you have 5 oranges you have to be able to trade them all together. Adding this rule in makes it a bit harder we find.

That way when someone is looking to trade two or 3 they can't break them up to get a quick trade. Sometimes you get stuck not being able to trade but I love the challenge. Pit can also be played silently where you would hold up the same number of fingers as the cards you are looking to trade. This is a good option if you have light sleepers in the house, but i find half the fun of Pit is the yelling and noise that goes along with it.

We like to switch things up and play Pit differently from time to time. I love that for such a small, simple game it is so versatile.


Conclusion

Pit is one of my favorite party board games. Its quick, it's loud, it's exciting, and my favorite part is it's cheap. If you play it right the cards will take a beating. Buy the deluxe version the first time so you have the bell, and then after that you can just buy the normal version if your cards get super beat up and you need a replacement. Unlike our normal games where we like to keep them in perfect condition, we don't mind if Pit gets trashed since buying a new one won't set us back much and the memories are worth it.

About the author

Kaitlyn

I love playing board games with my family and friends! If i'm not doing that you can usually find me belting out a song or drinking way too much coffee! Check out my full biography on the about me page!

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