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Pits & Perils


Pits & Perils is an "original" old-school role-playing game.  One modeled after the numerous war games-turned-fantasy RPG campaigns that proliferated during the early 1970s.  Back then, it was crappy little rule books typed in someone's basement.  Well, those days are back!

Pits & Perils has:

Classic character types, but with a twist (check out a FULL preview of the character rules on this page).

Extremely simple mechanics (perhaps the simplest ever) that can be tailored to nearly any situation.  Most of what the players do is decision-making, exploration, and role-playing.  The rules don't even try to do this for you.  And you know what? They shouldn't!

Nearly 100 monsters to fight and 200 magic items to win and wield.  All of them fully explained.  That's a lot for an 80-page rule book!

An amateur look and feel that captures the way things used to be. In those days, each group had its own homemade rules based on word of mouth and the historical war games they were already playing.  Pits & Perils is designed in this spirit. 

Pits & Perils is NOT a retro-clone, but an original system designed for those who want an old-school experience without excessive rules.  This book contains everything needed to get started, including how to create a character, build a dungeon, and run a campaign in a world where magic still works and monsters are real. So live and die by the sword. Or magic, if you prefer. Dark dungeons await...

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Reviews (7)
Discussions (3)
Customer avatar
BABIS S August 04, 2023 12:01 pm UTC
Are there any plans for a second edition? Or this is the second edition? I think I have read something about that but I am not sure. Thank you for your good job, this games seems amazing as it is by the way!
Customer avatar
James G August 04, 2023 3:47 pm UTC
Thanks for the kind and supportive words! This is the first, and definitive, edition with no plans for a second just yet...
Customer avatar
iain C August 19, 2022 3:28 pm UTC
Played 3 sessions of Pits and Perils with a 4th next week. 5 players all enjoying the system and it's great to DM. Old school in the sense of the DM has to be prepared to make rulings... not rely on rules. This keeps everything moving along.

Fast combat leaves more time for the good stuff... exploration of the unknown!
Customer avatar
James G August 19, 2022 5:01 pm UTC
Thanks for the kind words! We hope you have many great adventures ahead...
Customer avatar
Jeremy H February 21, 2014 4:03 am UTC
I see there was an update to this yesterday? What changes?
Customer avatar
James G February 21, 2014 5:10 am UTC
Hey Jeremy!

We corrected some minor (and limited) typographical errors. Nothing that affects game play in any way, but we thought the timing was right.

Anyway, we did it to coincide with the release of Fear! Fire! Foes!, the first supplement to Pits & Perils coming out next week...

Fear! Fire! Foes! has:

Variant character classes, like the eastern monk and psychic savant. Or become an elven fighter and combine magic with deadly combat maneuvers.

New equipment, including healing herbs and holy oils.

Advancement to level 15, giving players time to experience higher level adventures!

Powerful new spells. Master shape shifting and create vivid illusions - or wield fire and ice bolts against an array of terrifying new enemies.

Combat moves, like stunning blocks and parries, that make combat dynamic while preserving the simplicity of the basic game. Fighting has never been deadlier...

Awesome...See more
Customer avatar
Jeremy H February 25, 2014 5:40 am UTC
coolness! i look forward to seeing the new book. ^__^

i asked a bit about how you guys handled armor in your rules. could you take a moment to comment on that question in my review? thanks!
Customer avatar
James G February 25, 2014 9:05 pm UTC
You got it! Check out your review and our response...
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Product Information
Gold seller
Rule System(s)
File Size:
3.55 MB
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File Last Updated:
June 30, 2020
This title was added to our catalog on November 11, 2013.