Advanced Search

Shinobigami - Modern Ninja Battle RPG
Quick Preview
Full‑size Preview

Shinobigami - Modern Ninja Battle RPG

Watermarked PDF

Shinobigami - God of the Shinobi - is a tabletop Role-Playing game originally developed and published in Japan by legendary designer Toichiro Kawashima, and gorgeously illustrated by the talented Shie Nanahara, Shinobigami is a fast one-session RPG focusing on character drama, stories of conflict and cooperation, and light tactical strategy in a dark modern "World of Shadows" setting where mysterious ninja exist and engage in inter-clan conflict in an ongoing hidden cold war. 


The overall effect is a very easy-to-learn game that is equal parts Story-driven RPG, German-style board game, and Secret identity/role game (like Werewolf or Coup): With a few friends, you together create a dramatic story that starts and ends in the course of just a few hours (one evening). From there, you can revisit the same characters or make new characters, and create another tale set in the Ninja Cold War.



Shinobigami is a game for 3-7 players, with one player acting as the "Game Master" (GM), who prepares the scenario and helps facilitate the game. Each player creates a character from one of the six warring ninja clans in accordance with the rules, and introduces them to the other players (you can find out more about Shinobigami character creation and rules at the official website). The GM then hands each player a "Secret", which is a piece of information or a true goal specific to that character. The GM introduces the antagonist characters (if any), the Prize or Goal of the mission that all of the characters share, then the game begins.

The game plays in three Cycles: Each cycle, every player has one scene where their character is the focus. That player narrates their scene and starts moving to accomplish their goals. Based on their Secret and the other characters, they might attempt to learn the other character's Secrets, to form Emotional Bonds with them, or just follow them in order to trigger a one-on-one battle. 

After three cycles, there is a no-holds-barred free-for-all battle called the Climax Phase with twists and surprises as the players reveal their true alliances and hidden motives. After the dust settles from the Climax Phase, there's a brief epilogue where we see who accomplished their goals, which relationships changed or became stronger, and who walked away with the Prize.

This three-act structure, the character types, the secrets, the strategies and twists that occur during combat by means of Shinobigami's "Velocity System" battles, and most importantly the nature of the relationships that form in the game due to the Emotional Bond rules, means that even though the game follows a tight structure, no two games of Shinobigami will ever play out the same, even with the same players. It will be a unique experience each time.


The Book

Shinobigami has a very different form factor and design from common Western RPG books. Shinobigami is originally a small form factor hand-sized paperback book of about 195 pages, not too different than Japanese manga size (very readable on smaller tablet devices). The book is divided into two sections: The first half of the book contains a Japanese-style Replay, or an entire session of play - from character creation to epilogue - written out in screenplay format. This is a real session that happened, and provides the reader with a blueprint to understanding what kinds of stories and fun you can create with Shinobigami. A replay is also a great reference for new or inexperienced role-players, because it shows you what to expect from the game, how the rules work in actual play, and what an actually good, fun session with enthusiastic players can look like.

The second half of the book contains all the rules you need to play the game. Once you read the replay, you've got an idea of the flow of the game: The rules show you how you can take the next step and run the game yourself. The rules are written simply and concisely, and there are lots of random tables to help you with the character creation process, especially when trying to come up with authentic Japanese ninja-like character and NPC names. 

Shinobigami is a tabletop role-playing game: To play this game, you will need some friends, a few hours, and some six-sided dice or a free die-rolling app.

To learn more, and download free resources like character sheets and scenarios, please see the official Shinobigami website at

 Customers Who Bought this Title also Purchased
Reviews (4)
Discussions (0)
May 4th, 2020
Shinobigami is a great change of pace from D&D for our group! The translation is fairly clear, and the replay really helps explain how to play the game. This game has been really fun for our group, with most members being anime fans. The ru [...]
March 10th, 2020
Game is a ton of fun, and a nice change of pace from games my group normally plays (longer campaigns in the DnD/Pathfinder mold). I wish the PDF had bookmarks for easier and quicker navigation, but that's apparently coming in a future update. The start [...]
January 20th, 2020
Great fast paced and fun game! Though the translation has been a long time coming and is over two years overdue the game is really good. The PDF could use a few updates to include bookmarks in particular, but has everything you need to get playing your [...]
January 9th, 2020
The game itself is interesting but the PDF version feels a little lacking. The table of contents has a total of four entries for a 200 page book. The PDF has no cover and no bookmarks. Hopefully it gets updated later. I'd probably knock it up a star th [...]
Narrow Results
 Follow Your Favorites!
NotificationsSign in to get custom notifications of new products!

Product Information
Electrum seller
File Size:
132.45 MB
Original electronic
Scanned image
These products were created by scanning an original printed edition. Most older books are in scanned image format because original digital layout files never existed or were no longer available from the publisher.

For PDF download editions, each page has been run through Optical Character Recognition (OCR) software to attempt to decipher the printed text. The result of this OCR process is placed invisibly behind the picture of each scanned page, to allow for text searching. However, any text in a given book set on a graphical background or in handwritten fonts would most likely not be picked up by the OCR software, and is therefore not searchable. Also, a few larger books may be resampled to fit into the system, and may not have this searchable text background.

For printed books, we have performed high-resolution scans of an original hardcopy of the book. We essentially digitally re-master the book. Unfortunately, the resulting quality of these books is not as high. It's the problem of making a copy of a copy. The text is fine for reading, but illustration work starts to run dark, pixellating and/or losing shades of grey. Moiré patterns may develop in photos. We mark clearly which print titles come from scanned image books so that you can make an informed purchase decision about the quality of what you will receive.
Original electronic format
These ebooks were created from the original electronic layout files, and therefore are fully text searchable. Also, their file size tends to be smaller than scanned image books. Most newer books are in the original electronic format. Both download and print editions of such books should be high quality.
File Information
Watermarked PDF
Watermarked PDF

These PDF files are digitally watermarked to signify that you are the owner. A small message is added to the bottom of each page of the PDF containing your name and the order number of your purchase.

Warning: If any files bearing your information are found being distributed illegally, then your account will be suspended and legal action may be taken against you.

Here is a sample of a page from a watermarked title:

File Last Updated:
December 16, 2019
This title was added to our catalog on December 16, 2019.
Publisher Average Rating