The Basics of Poker


Poker is a card game that is played between two or more players for several rounds. During each round, players place money in the pot and are dealt cards. The players then make bets based on the strength of their hand. The player with the highest hand wins the pot and all of the money that was placed into it during that round. The game of poker has a wide variety of variations, but most of them have the same basic features.

Before a round of betting begins, each player must decide whether to call, raise, or fold his or her cards. To raise, a player must put in at least the amount of the previous player’s bet, or more if desired. When a player folds, he or she forfeits any chips that are in the pot.

A poker hand consists of five cards and can be ranked in one of three ways: Straight – A straight is a consecutive line of cards that share the same rank, such as two kings and four queens. Flush – A flush is a combination of three matching cards of the same rank, such as three jacks or three sixes. Pair – A pair is two cards of the same rank, such as two aces or two kings.

Articles on the history of Poker mention a variety of earlier bluffing games, not all of which are relevant to the development of the game as we know it today. However, it is likely that the most immediate ancestor of Poker was Poque (French for “poche”), the French version of an early German bluffing game called Pochen.