## Can someone help me figure out the secret to this magic trick?

Okay my friend showed me a magic trick and i can't figure out how he did it..

This is what he did:
1. put the SHUFFLED cards into separate piles with different amounts in them. but sometimes if there is a king, he puts it in a separate pile by itself with all of the cards faces facing up. (possible significance)
2. flips the piles so they face down.
3.then has the other person take all the piles except three (the king counts as a pile)
4. then the person flips the top of any two of the 3 remaining decks & he has to guess the other top card.
5. to guess it, he takes the cards that the person took away in step 3 and with them faced downward, he either counts them or something.

Help?

### One Response to “Can someone help me figure out the secret to this magic trick?”

1. Tristan Says:

This trick is called Any Way You Count 'Em.

Basically, he counts to 13 with every pile, so the last card will always equal to the number of cards in his hand. Notice how he leaves the King in a separate pile? Because it's counted as 13.

Anyway, pretend I'm doing the trick to you. What I do is I put one card face-up, and deal cards on top of it until the sum of the card value and cards on top of it equals 13 (For example, if it's an 8, I deal 5 cards on top of it).

I'll do this for the remainder of the deck, and let you choose three piles, and take the rest of the cards into a separate deck. So now, you have 3 piles of cards, and I have a deck of cards. Now I discard 10 cards from my deck. You'll see why later.

You then flip the top card of two piles. Say you flip a 6 from your first pile, then I'll discard 6 cards from my deck. Now you flip an 8 from your second pile, then I'll discard 8 cards from my deck. The remaining cards in my deck will equal the top card of your third pile.

Remember how I discarded 10 cards? How it works is I'm manipulating the number of cards in my deck so that it will equal the number of cards each pile takes away from a 52 card deck. Okay, remember how I discarded 6 cards from the first pile? There should be 7 cards under the 6 on your pile, so the pile took 14 cards away from a 52 card deck (6 cards from my deck, 7 cards under the 6, and the 6 itself). And the second pile with the 8 should have 5 cards under it, so the pile takes another 14 cards away from the now 38 card deck (8 cards from my deck, 5 cards under the 8, and the 8 itself).

So, if the third pile also takes 14 cards away from the now 24 card deck, then I would have 10 cards left over. Recall that the number of cards I discard is the same number as the flipped card. That is why I discarded those 10 cards in the beginning; it is to make my deck have only 42 cards (14 x 3), so that the number of cards I would have discarded for the third pile would be the same number as top card of the third pile. If I do that, then the number of cards left in the third pile plus the number of cards I have left in my hand should equal 14.

It's all math, so you can make variations of the counting process. But the essential trick to this is that each pile takes away the same number of cards from your deck, and discarding cards from the deck so that each pile would take away a third of the remaining deck. I have fooled many people by changing the math process so that it's always different, and that it's always unpredictable.