The Basics of Poker


Poker is a card game in which players make wagers (the amount varies by game) into a central pot. The highest-ranking hand wins the pot. The game can be played by 2 to 14 players, but is most commonly played with six or seven.

When a player’s turn to bet comes, they can choose to call, raise, or fold. When calling, a player places chips into the pot equal to the amount raised by the person before them. If the player has a high enough poker hand, they can win the pot by showing it to the other players.

In most games, the dealer shuffles the cards, then deals them to each player one at a time, beginning with the player on their left. Depending on the game, they may be dealt face-up or face-down. After each betting interval, the dealer puts down three additional cards that anyone can use. This is called the flop.

At the end of the final betting round, all players show their hands. The player with the best five-card poker hand wins the pot. If no one has a winning hand, the pot is shared among all players who callers in the final betting round. A pot can also have side pots if a player is all-in before the last betting round. A side pot is not eligible to be won by an all-in player.