The Basics of Poker



Poker is a card game in which players bet on the value of their hands. It is a game of skill and chance and is widely believed to be based on a 17th-century French game called poque.

When playing poker, each player must ante some amount of money into the pot (the amount varies by game but is usually a nickel). Then the cards are dealt one at a time, face up, starting with the person to their left. Then the first of several betting rounds begins. Each player may call, raise or fold their hand during each betting interval.

To win the pot, you must have a good poker hand. There are many different poker hands, but some of the most common are: A flush is 5 cards of consecutive rank, all from the same suit. A full house is 3 matching cards of one rank, plus 2 matching cards of another rank. A pair is two cards of the same rank. A straight is five cards in a running sequence, but they do not have to be of the same suit.

A high card is used to break ties in poker. If no one has a pair or better, then the highest card wins. The high card also breaks ties in ties when more than one player has the same type of hand. A player who calls a higher bet forfeits his rights to any side pots.