Ambitious Card Routines

Discussion in 'Magic Forum' started by MagicCalls2000, May 10, 2018.

  1. Hey, so I'm new to this forum (not magic though, haha)

    Just wondering how you all structure your ambitious card routines? Currently trying to rework and rewrite mine after a long time not performing it.

    Let me know all the techniques you use in your routine, if you use one!
  2. My routines are usually something I keep close to the chest, but since I don't do this professionally any more I guess I can share.

    My original motivation was to do an ACR that didn't use any of the common moves. I wrote this when I was still really new in magic, and while I have since changed the scripting significantly, and cut out some of it, this is the way I used to do it:

    Riffle up the deck, volunteer calls stop. Taking the full top packet, I show the bottom card and ask the audience to remember it.
    Side steal as I put the packets back together.
    Ask them to imagine the card sitting, face up, on the top of the deck. It should look something like, this (wave the hand, deposit the card face up - essentially a "Window Change")
    Flip the card over face down
    Second deal, place that card at the bottom of the deck. Spread the cards to show it's really on the bottom, square up.
    Flip over top card to reveal it's jumped back to the top. "Let's see that again, it was too quick."
    Second deal, place card at the very bottom, spread to show, square up and show top card.
    "That's still too fast. I'll let you see what's going on."
    Flip the top card over, face up, to the bottom of the deck (Basically, card is face down at the top of the deck, I reach up with my index finger and pull it around to the bottom of the deck, face up)
    I do a slow rise here - it's a combination of "Schwfity" "Uzumaki" and "The Graduate". In short, with a little shake of the deck the card moves up about 1/3 of the deck. Spread to show the rise, repeat. It melts all the way to the top.
    Hand them the card to inspect and sign. (Ditch all but one card while they do that)
    Take the card back, Do a very ballsy Tilt, pause, click the cards back and forth to show the deck has vanished except the signed selection.
    In the display of the card, I use the same steal as the Bertram Change to clean up, hand them the signed card.

    If I want, I use a gambler's cop and some misdirection to make the deck appear again, but usually I wouldn't.

    When I first started I used Card To Mouth as well, but since so many people use that I stopped.

    I also would use the deck vanish to either turn the deck into a block of glass, or plates of steel, depending on my mood. The steel was a "Pass Trainer" - I liked that because I could build it up a lot by having everyone put their hands out to catch it, and it was so loud it drew a LOT of attention from people nearby. Good for busking.
    ChrisJGJ likes this.
  3. Thanks a bunch for this, my friend! I'm going to find this super handy for writing up my routine in the next few days, thank you!
  4. I'm happy if it inspires you. Don't copy it.
    KaviruG likes this.
  5. Oh no, not at all. Sorry if I made it seem like my intention was to simply take your routine and use it for myself. I have many of my own ideas already lined up but the point of this thread was to inspire me to create a more unique routine. That'd what so amazing about the community of magicians: we can help each other without just taking each other's ideas for ourselves.

    Again, thank you!
    KaviruG likes this.
  6. There's so many things you can do with an ACR.

    I usually change the sleights a bit, but I always start with a M. Tilt

    The reason is that they haven't seen what you are about to do so there is no heat in the sleight at that point. If you do it correctly, you may even be 2 steps ahead, if you know what I mean :)

    Some sleights that are good for ACRs are (naturally) passes, the dropsleight, and obviously the DL.

    I find that besides the presentation, the last phase really is the one that sells the trick. The typical popup move is good. Another idea is card to impossible location. Look at Tommy Wonder's version of ACR, his version is fantastic.
    KaviruG and ChrisJGJ like this.
  7. For me it is all about building on I possibility. It starts off pretty easy then gets more and more impossible. Here is an example of how I perform my ACR.

    Phase 1: Card is placed in the deck shuffled and shown to come to the top. Explanation? It could be sleight of hand I suppose right?

    Phase 2: it is placed very cleanly and slowly into the middle and all I do is snap. It appears on top. Wait... maybe you did something super fast that I did not see?

    Phase 3: I let them cut the deck and place the card in the center. Hand them the deck, let THEM snap and turnover the top card. Now it cannot be me manipulating the deck.

    Phase 4: Bend the card and do it once more so they can see the exact moment it comes to the top.

    The idea is that it gets more and more magical and impossible at every step. I would keep it 3-5 phases max. Anything longer than 6 phases becomes boring and repetitive unless you have a very engaging story lol. Even Daryl (rest his soul) performed it too many times... after like the 24th phase it is wrapped in rope and still works but by then the spectators don’t care because they already expect it to be on top.
    KaviruG and JoshL8 like this.
  8. Me too, it looks like there is no sleight of hand at all and they don't know what is going to happen so they don't know to even look for sleight of hand. The Marlo tilt is definitely the first move I always do.
    I like to finish with the pop-up move because of how visual it is, because with the rest of the effect they can't physically see it move, but then they can, it's one of my favourites definitely.
    I will do, thank you!
    I totally agree, I started writing my routine up the other day and my main goal was definitely to make the stages more and more impossible each time and debunk any theories about the last stage.

    Thank you for your routine, too!
    obrienmagic likes this.
  9. The sleights you use in an ACR I guess can make it unique, but really it's just more of "and now its on top". In a spectators eyes, no matter how you did it, it looks the same. So the real uniqueness, in my opinion, comes down to how you close it. There are so many options out there. Like Christopher said he used to use card to mouth, but everyone does it so he stopped.

    I'm with romerojp on this one: I think the real challenge is coming up with a compelling kicker ending that nobody does.

  10. That's a very cool idea, when is the book being released.

    But in all honesty WHEN... neat stuff.

    (Can I get a copy:p)

    But for me, my ACR is quick I normally use it as a transition into an Omni deck or if I don't have that I do Xaviors rise. I don't really see the appeal. For me, I think ACR is very much a got ya got ya got ya kind of trick. However, I haven't put in the time to make it incredible. But if you think yours is good then you do that.
  11. There's a reason the ACR is one of the classics that still stands the test of time. It is a simple, visual and transcends language. You could, if you wanted to, make a good ACR without saying a word in your presentation. It is so flexible it can be impromptu or it can be enhanced by gimmicks/props.

    Perhaps we haven't seen the same ACRs, because I respectfully disagree with your comment. What's there not to like of the ACR plot?
    KaviruG likes this.
  12. The plot is fine. The execution of the plot, however, is often repetitive, boring, and cookie cutter. With so much variety in the sleights available to us to explore even the most basic concept of the plot (A selected card appears at the top of the deck repeatedly), you still basically see the same thing from most people.

    My own preferences are to keep it short and simple. I didn't want it to be more than 5 phases, I didn't want it to feel repetitive, and I wanted to give it a personal angle that showed a bit of who I was. You'll notice there's only one time when I do the same thing twice - Phases 2 and 3. This is because I have found people literally kind of miss it if I don't repeat that phase. It also hooks into the narrative that I use currently (Which revolves around a hunting technique called pursuit predation). So each phase feels a little different, builds up to the next phase, and it all makes sense with the script.

    Ha! When David and I both aren't crazy busy for long enough to get it written?
    RealityOne and C J like this.

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