The Basics of Poker


Poker is a card game in which players try to make the best five-card hand from a variety of combinations of cards. It is one of the most popular games in the world and can be played in hundreds of different variations.

Poker involves betting, raising, calling, and folding (pushing your cards into the middle and surrendering any chance of winning the hand). It is a game of skill as well as strategy and can be played both online and in person.

Rules and terminology

Each player is dealt a pair of cards face down, called his hole cards, and a single card face up, called his pocket cards. The first of several betting rounds begins.

Betting is made during each betting interval, beginning with the first bettor and continuing until the last bettor has called or a certain amount of time has passed (usually ten minutes). The players may fold their hands, which means that they do not want to bet any more, or call, which means that they match the previous bettor’s bet.

The winning hand is the one that has the highest possible combination of cards. This is usually determined by their odds, but if there are two or more identical hands, they divide the winnings equally.

The highest standard poker hand is five of a kind, which beats any straight flush. There are a number of other standard hands, including: