Luton stayed clear at the head of Coca Cola League One as they extended their unbeaten league run to 11 matches.
But they were taken all the way by Tranmere who would have won comfortably had they accepted some guilt edged opportunities.
An amazing five minute sequence lead up to Tranmere's goal when they were awarded a penalty in the 28th minute when Ryan Taylor fell under the challenge of Curtis Davies.
Taylor had to receive treatment and when he went to take to take the spot kick he was ordered to the sidelines by Staffordshire referee Tony Bates.
Iain Hume was then entrusted with the kick only to see his effort saved by stand in Luton keeper Dino Seremet.
Referee Bates then ordered the kick to be retaken and yellow carded Chris Coyne and Kevin Nicholls for their prolonged protests.
This time normal penalty taker Taylor was entrusted with the kick. Again Seremet saved but the rebound fell to Taylor who found the target with the game now in the 32nd minute.
The Hatters should have been out of it by the 72nd minute when home substitute Calvin Zola wasted an easy chance.
Luton went on to draw level in the 76th minute with a superb angled header by Coyne from a Nicholls cross.
Tranmere should still have won it but in the dying moments Zola missed another chance and Danny Harrison brought a fisted save from Seremet.
It was a somewhat ill tempered affair with eight cautions in all.