You often hear rumors about the fates of people and countries being gambled away on a game of cards, but if Card Shark is any indication, it’s not that simple. It takes many games of cards and a lot of cheating before you can play on the gambling-for-the-fate-of-others level. Of course, that’s exactly the situation you’ll find yourself in at the end of the game, and the precise way you play will change the story’s outcome. Here’s how to get all the endings in Card Shark.
How to Get All the Endings in Card Shark
After successfully convincing King Louis XV of MacGregor’s treachery in the final act, the King will request one final game of cards between you, him, the Comte, and Erdnase. Whoever wins this last round will have the King’s undivided attention as he decides how he should handle your own duplicitous actions.
In order to aid you, the Comte and Erdnase will teach you one final cheating trick, the Expert Dealer. They’ll go through it with you, but here’s the short version:
- Use a Bottom Drag to skim the deck and mark all four aces.
- Use a False Riffle Shuffle to mix up the cards, making sure to drop the pack of aces together.
- Use Palm Glimpse to steal the pack of aces from the bottom of the deck. It’ll always be on the bottom, so you can grab it right away.
- Use Shark Deal to deal the aces from the bottom of the deck to your desired target.
Since you’ll ideally have all four aces at the bottom of the deck, you can use Shark Deal to completely control who wins the game. The player you deal all four aces to, as well as some other factors, will control which ending you get.
Cheat for Yourself
If you deal all four aces to yourself, you’ll win, but Erdnase will sneak a fifth ace into your hand, outing you as a cheater. The Comte will take the fall for you and be executed in secret, while you and Erdnase will be ordered out of Versailles.
Cheat for Louis XV
If you deal all four aces to the King, the Comte will decry the King as a despot rigging the entire country in his favor. He’ll be arrested and thrown into the Bastille, while you and Erdnase leave scot-free.
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Cheat for the Comte
If you deal all four aces to the Comte, Erdnase will sneak the fifth ace to his hand instead. The Comte uses the opportunity to tell the King to his face what he thinks of the state of France. The King takes poorly to this and has him arrested, though his fate after that is unknown.
Cheat for Erdnase
If you deal all four aces to Erdnase, the King will suspect him of cheating, but Erdnase will dismiss it, saying he already got what he wanted in having MacGregor arrested. The King will dismiss all three of you, and the Comte will visit you regularly while Erdnase disappears.
Get Caught Cheating
If you spend too long on your tricks and max out the suspicion meter, the King will have all three of you arrested and sent to Guyana. The Comte will die, Erdnase will escape, and you’ll serve a 15-year sentence until Louis XVI takes power.
Mess Up the Trick
If you botch your trick and lose track of the aces, the Comte will throw a tantrum, telling you off for being a sloppy cheat before being carted away. All three of you will be imprisoned in the Bastille for an indeterminate period.
Don’t Cheat at All
If you mark the wrong cards on purpose during your Bottom Drag, nobody will win the game. The King will be satisfied with this, as it meant no one cheated. He’ll let all of you go, though not before telling you that there’s nothing he could offer you, whether you’re his son or not.
No matter which ending you get, you’ll get a brief epilogue afterward where you’ll return to Pau and take ownership of Ms. Porterhouse’s tavern. Depending on how much you donated to the Cascarots over the course of the game, you’ll be informed of how well-regarded you became post-revolution. You’ll also get a chance to show one of your patrons a bit of sleight-of-hand, or you can just opt to go pet your dog and leave well enough alone.