The Basics of Poker


Poker is a card game in which players bet on the outcome of a hand. Generally, the player with the best hand wins. Players can also bluff, raising bets when they don’t have a good hand to try to convince others that they do have a strong one.

The game is played in rounds, with each player participating in a certain number of hands before the final showdown occurs. At this point, the remaining players will show their cards to everyone and the winner is determined. During the betting phase, players may raise or call bets to add more money into the pot. To raise, players must make a bet that is higher than the last one.

Each player starts with two cards that are hidden from the other players. After a short betting period, 3 cards are dealt face up in the center of the table (revealed to all players). These are called the “flop” and they can be used to build a 5-card poker hand.

When hands tie on rank (pair, three of a kind, etc) the high card outside the hand wins. A flush is a hand consisting of five consecutive cards of the same suit, such as four kings and an ace. High cards break ties in all other hands.