The Basics of Poker


Poker is a card game played by two or more players. It is a game of skill, where the better player wins. There are a number of different games and variants of poker, with the most common using a standard 52-card deck. The game evolved from a simpler three-card brag, which was popular around the time of the American Revolutionary War.

Players place forced bets, called the ante and blind bets (or the button and big bet) before being dealt cards. These bets go into a pot, or total of all the bets placed in any one deal. The object of the game is to win the pot by getting a high-ranking hand, or by making a bet that other players do not call.

There may be several rounds of betting in a poker game, and the hands develop during these rounds by adding or replacing cards. At the end of each round, players reveal their hands and the player with the highest hand wins the pot. If no players have a high hand, the pot is split between all remaining players.

A full house is a combination of three matching cards of one rank and two matching cards of another rank. A flush is five cards of consecutive rank and of the same suit. A straight is five cards that skip around in rank but are from more than one suit. A pair is two cards of the same rank plus two unmatched cards.