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Puzzle - Answer

You find yourself playing a game with your friend. It is played with a deck of only 16 cards, divided into 4 suits: Red, Blue, Orange and Green. There are four cards in each suit: Ace, King, Queen and Jack. Ace outranks King, which outranks Queen, which outranks Jack - except for the Green Jack, which outranks every other card.

If two cards have the same face value, then Red outranks Blue, which outranks Orange, which outranks Green, again except for the Green Jack, which outranks everything.

Here's how the game is played: you are dealt one card face up, and your friend is dealt one card face down. Your friend then makes some true statements, and you have to work out who has the higher card, you or your friend. It's that simple!

Round 1:
You are dealt the Green Ace and your friend makes three statements:

1. My card is higher than any Queen.
2. Knowing this, if my card is more likely to beat yours, then my card is Blue. Otherwise it isn't.
3. Given all of the information you now know, if your card is more likely to beat mine, then my card is a King. Otherwise it isn't.

Who has the higher card, you or your friend?

 [Ref: ZGQN] © E.J. Shamblen

Answer: Your friend.

You are dealt the Green Ace.

By #1: your friend's card is higher than any Queen, so your friend can only have one of these cards: Red Ace, Blue Ace, Orange Ace, Red King, Blue King, Orange King, Green King, Green Jack.

By #2: 4 of these 8 cards could beat your card, so your friend's card is not more likely to beat yours, so your friend's card is not blue. Leaving Red Ace, Orange Ace, Red King, Orange King, Green King, Green Jack.

By #3: of the remaining 6 cards, your card can beat 3, so your card is not more likely to beat your friend's, so your friend's card is not a King. Leaving Red Ace, Orange Ace, Green Jack - all of which beat your card. QED.

Back to the puzzles...

 

 



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