The Basics of Poker


Poker is a card game that is played from a standard pack of cards (sometimes with the addition of jokers). The cards are ranked, from highest to lowest. Each hand contains five cards, and the highest hand wins.

There are several variants of Poker, including Draw and Stud. There are also games where cards are dealt face down, and others where they are dealt face up.

The game begins when the dealer shuffles a pack of cards and deals them in rotation to the players, one at a time. The player on the chair to the left has the first turn to deal, then the dealer takes the next turn.

Once the cards have been dealt, betting begins. The betting intervals, or rounds, continue until each player either calls or folds.

Each round of betting involves a sequence of bets and raises by other players. When a player makes a bet, the next player to the left has the option of calling by putting the same number of chips into the pot; raising by adding more chips to the pot; or dropping, i.e. folding.

Ties are broken if two hands have the same high pair, or if they have the same high cards in different suits. If two hands have identical fours of a kind, then the rank of the fourth card outside of the fours breaks ties.

Often, the game is played in a tournament format. The competitions are usually held over a short period of time, and the winners are awarded prize money. Typically, a special fund called the “kitty” is established. When the tournament is over, any chips in the kitty are divided equally among the remaining players.