Beginner’s Guide to Poker



Poker is a card game in which players place bets into the pot, based on their belief that their actions will improve their chances of winning. While the outcome of any hand significantly involves chance, a player’s decision to make a bet is made on the basis of probability, psychology and other strategic considerations.

Before betting begins, players must ante something (amount varies by game). They are then dealt five cards. Once all the players have called or folded, the game proceeds to the next round of betting, known as the flop.

At this stage, a player may choose to discard one of his/her cards and take new ones from the top of the deck. The highest hand wins the pot.

When there are no wild cards, the highest hand is four of a kind. If two hands have the same rank of four of a kind, the hand with the higher kicker (the highest unmatched card) wins. If there are wild cards, ties are broken by the rules for High Card.

In the beginning, beginners should play relatively tight and avoid playing crazy hands. The best way to do this is to always bluff with at least some type of a decent hand such as 2-2 or 7-8 suited. This gives players some outs if the bluff goes awry and helps them build a solid bankroll. Also, they should never be afraid to call/raise when other players check/limp into a pot. This will usually allow them to get the most out of their cards and win more than they would have by folding.