The Basics of Poker


Poker is a card game that’s fun to play, but it takes skill and strategy to succeed. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced player, learning the ins and outs of the game can make your poker experience a lot more enjoyable.

The Rules of Poker

There are a number of different variants of poker, but each one plays from a standard pack of cards (usually 52). In some games, jokers are also used as wild cards.

Players combine their private hands with community cards to form the strongest possible five-card hand. The winner is the player with the highest-ranking hand.

Before the cards are dealt, each player is required to make an initial amount of money called an ante. Depending on the game, this may be a small sum or a larger amount.

After the ante, the dealer deals the cards to each player in turn. Each player must then decide to ante up, call, or fold.

The Flop

In most poker games, the first three cards are dealt face up to the center of the table. All players use these cards to form their best five-card poker hand.

The Turn

After the flop, a fourth card is dealt to each player. This card is shared with everyone on the board and can be used to break ties between hands of similar rank.

The River

The river is the last card dealt in the game, and it is the last opportunity to make a bet. After the river, the pot is awarded to the player with the best hand.