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VINE VOICEon December 25, 2001
As I type this review, my kids (young adults) and their grandparents are playing Pit. The grandparents introduced us to this game and we often play at their house. When I saw this DELUXE version of Pit, that comes with a bell, I just had to get it for them!
A simple game to learn, ALL ages can enjoy this game together. 7 year olds could play this game and the adults don't necessarily have an advantage over the kids, which makes it fun for everyone.
Be ready to be LOUD - right now I can hear shouts of "Three, three, three" and laughter and I'm not even on the same floor as the Pit-Players!
I read in another review that this game was introduced in 1904. Obviously, this is a game that has staying power! Isn't it great that even with modern technology which allowed me to purchase this game online, we can enjoy games that were invented decades ago!
Turn off the TV, and spend time with your family playing games. Go make some memories!
...
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on February 12, 2001
You and your fellow traders inspect the bill of goods you've each just acquired. Should you corner the market on wheat, the most valuable commodity, or shoot for barley on this round and make up the difference later?

The trading bell rings and the room erupts in shouts of "Three! Three! Three!" "Four! Four! Four!" "Two! Two Two!" Shares fly from trader to trader. Hmm. . .3 more shares of corn. Are you going to make it? Or is someone else going to ring the bell first and stop the trading? "Two! Two! Two!" you shout. Another trader responds. The last 2 shares of corn! You lunge at the bell, smack the ringer and yell "Corner!"

Since it was first introduced in 1904, PIT continues to entertain new generations of game players grown weary of video and computer games. Consisting of a deck of cards and a desk bell, Deluxe PIT adds the clang of the trading bell to the excitement. For even more of a challenge, you can throw in the Bull and Bear cards that can either double your score or plunge you into debt.

While the instructions give additional rules for a "silent" game in which the players hold up fingers to indicate their trades, here's another variation which goes even further in creating the feeling of a trading floor:

Play the regular "loud" game but set the bell in the middle of a card table. Play STANDING UP so the players can mix, mingle, reach across each other, and REALLY have to lunge for the bell. You'll never laugh so hard or have more fun playing PIT.
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on November 18, 1998
I'm glad Parker Bros. decided to reissue this game. For a while, they had discontinued it. I have an old 1930s-era set. This has got to be one of the most fun family games ever invented! The rules are easy to understand, and even little ones (say age 6 or so) can play along fine. It's also just as much fun for the grown-ups. You try to "corner" the market by trading for all of one type of commodity (e.g. barley, wheat, corn, etc). The first one to get all of one kind must yell "CORNER"! to win that round! We play this game every Thanksgiving as a family tradition. The only person who hasn't enjoyed it over the years was a VERY SHY and quiet boyfriend, who couldn't speak up loudly enough to do the trading. Buy this game. You'll love it. END
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on November 28, 1999
This was our family's holiday game as I was growing up (I'm 45) and we introduced our kids (9 & 13) to it 2 years ago. It is the game of choice on Thanksgiving and Christmas, whenever there's a crowd. Our deck (from '62) is getting a little ragged. glad to see the new one out, but I miss Barley and Flax as commodities.
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on February 19, 2004
PIT is a card game based on the trading of commodities. This sounds dry when you first hear it, but actually this is one of the most enjoyable party games ever invented. It's simple to learn, fast to play, and involves lots of screaming and yelling. (Try to imagine "Go Fish" if nobody takes turns and it was played like a furious farmer's auction). But the game also has a fascinating history and teaches something about the nature of the economy.
The commodities market developed in the 19th century as the modern agricultural economy began to grow in the U.S. When many farmers faced bankruptcy during lean times of the winter season, "forward contracts" -- an agreement between a buyer and a seller on a price, quantity, and a future delivery date of a particular commodity like wheat or beans or coffee -- started to appear. Between the time of the contract purchase and the delivery, the price of the commodity could change rapidly and violently in either direction, so to protect themselves, merchants would travel to Chicago to trade their various contracts and agree on a later delivery date. The location where they traded (originally a room above a flour store) became The Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) -- also know as "THE PIT." Today we see the The Pit on television every day, where traders dash about desperately yelling and giving signals to buy or trade contracts on wheat, soybeans, Eurodollars, heating oil, gold, and so forth. (Actually, I work in a commodities brokerage firm and live this madness every day.)
And thus arose this long-lived, legendary card game. By 1904, when the game was first published, the commodities market had exploded into a major economic force in the country, and one in which speculators could lose or gains millions in a short period of time. This game is meant to imitate the frenzy of traders on the floor of the pit, selling and buying contracts on various commodities rapidly so they can "corner" a particular market, and where fortunes can be made or lost in seconds.
This may sound a bit complicated, but PIT is an incredibly simple game to learn and addictive to play. Seven-year-olds can pick it up quickly and be trading as hard as an adult player after only one round. The play is simple. A deck of eight different "suits" of nine cards each (commodities like wheat, oats, coffee, and sugar), plus a "bear" card and "bull" card, are dealt to the players. The dealer then rings a bell (included in this set) to declare trading open. Immediately, without any semblance of taking turns or order, the players try to discard cards they don't want by trading them with other players so they can get all nine cards of one commodity in their hand and "corner" that market and win the round. You receive a particular number of points depending on what commodity you've nabbed (wheat, for example, is the most valuable at 100 points). All trading is blind: a player holds up cards of all the same suit he wishes to trade, keeping their backs to the other players, and yells out how many he wants to trade ("I'm selling three! Three! Who wants three!). Other player may ask him to trade less if he they have fewer cards available to offer ("Will you drop to two!? I'll trade two!"). Usually, three or four trades among different players are going on at any time, or players are competing to grab an offered trade first, and the game becomes a furious race to nab that nine-of-a-kind and slam your hand on the bell to announce that you've won the round.
Amongst all this looms the Bear and Bull cards. The Bull is a wild card; you can corner a market with only eight cards plus the Bull. But if the Bull is in your hand when someone else slams the bell, you lose twenty points. The Bear is always bad: you lose twenty points if it's in your hand at the end of the round, and as long as it's in your hand, you can't corner a market. You keep playing rounds until someone gets 500 points and wins the game.
New players may be a bit hesitant with the fast and furious play style, but pretty quickly everyone will be feeling like a real tradier and yelling and wheeling and dealing. I've seen ten-year-olds beat out fifty-year-olds with their enthusiasm. And no one will ever get bored playing this. (Neighbors, however, may complain about the noise.)
The only real drawback to PIT is that it isn't as fun with a small group. The more players you have, the more fun it is. A three-player game is possible, but it isn't as intense as a game of five or more. And eight players (the maximum) is an absolutely amazing thing to see or take part in. Buy this game...you'll be the hit of your next party. It has all the wheeling and dealing of Monopoly in one tenth the time!
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on July 30, 2014
Pit is a great game especially for groups of around 6 people. I won't tell you the rules or the premise behind the game but suffice to say it is fun, fast paced, and will get a lot of laughs. It is also a very easy game to learn, set up, and play. It consists of a stack of cards and a bell...pretty darn simple.

My complaint is the quality of the cards. After a few rounds of the game, several of the cards began to "dog ear," on the corners making the cards a little cumbersome in your hand. I don't know why they could not simply include high quality cards. A regular deck of cards is much higher quality. Like I said above, the game is CARDS AND A BELL! Can't you spend a few more cents and give quality cards with the game? The game is all about exchanging cards to other players, sliding them across the table, etc. at a fast pace. Does it not make sense to include cards that can hold up to that type of play?

My concern is that I will probably only get a dozen or two full games out of it before many of the cards are too damaged to use. Put, Pit is fun and a great group game...therefore 3 stars. This game is a Grade A idea with Grade D quality.
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on December 7, 1999
This game is the most fun you'll ever have with cards. Even the wall flowers out there will get caught up in the trading fun and start yelling like madmen when they just need a couple of cards for a set.
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on April 11, 2006
Pit is possibly the most fun party game ever. It's easy to pick up and is extremely invigorating. This is the game to play if you're having people over that you don't know very well...it helps people loosen up and enjoy themselves, and is a great ice-breaker (once you've all been yelling simultaneously at each other and scrambling for cards across the table it's hard to be reserved!). People of all ages enjoy this game; I highly recommend it.
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on November 10, 2004
It's been over 25 years since I played Pit, but I remember it like it was yesterday. I played this exciting interactive game with my extended family but it was also a blast with my church family. What I remember is that I received Pit (including the classic bright orange bell) for a Christmas gift as a child in the mid 1970's and it was the family game of choice during the holidays and get-togethers. Even at an elementary school age, I realized the playing field was level because everyone had to interact with each other. Unlike some other games, Pit didn't require some detailed strategy and that you wait your turn to play (Imagine being an impatient, one of eight players). Pit, however, is more enjoyable with the maximum number of people. All you need is a sturdy round table to accomodate up to 8 people (Oval or rectangle tables cause people to stand up and get overly rowdy, so beware!), periodic water breaks between each round to keep your vocal chords lubricated from all the laughter (The sugary drinks and Pit combination can be cause severe hyperactivity), and a pre-warning to all your neighbors about the shouting and the highlight of it all, the opening and closing BELL. I just purchased a new edition of Pit for the cold winter months ahead, so when football season ends I'll be having continuous indoor weekend fun. Every household with or without children should have Pit in their toy collection. Let's see Pit live another 100 years!
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on December 20, 2011
This game is a blast. fast action, lots of interaction amoung your friends... the discription of this particular game mentions "casino style, or type" of cards... i had imagined a stiffer more slick like it had some coating on it to make it last longer type of card. That is not what came in this package. There might be others out there with the stiffer type card that will last longer but the cards in my box were non coated and basically flimsy. I would not recommend this set. it is a great game and the cards will get handled fairly roughly as you pass them back and forth between the other 'traders' in the game... often pushing them at the other person as you grab for their cards... anyway... that is my review for this purchase... great game, this set the cards were lacking in my opinion.
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