The Basics of Poker


Poker is a card game of skill and chance played by two or more players. The game can be very fast-paced, and players bet frequently to try and win the pot (the sum of all bets made during a deal). Whether you want to play in a casino or at home, there are several different poker games to choose from.

Before the game begins, each player buys in with a certain amount of chips, usually represented by the lightest colored chip. A white chip is worth a single unit of the minimum ante or bet; a red chip is worth five whites; and a blue chip is typically worth 10 or 20 white chips, depending on the type of poker game.

Each betting interval, called a round, ends when the bets are equalized, meaning that each player has either called the total staked by their predecessors or raised it further. If a player cannot raise their stake further, they must drop and forfeit their right to participate in the pot.

The best poker hands are made up of a pair of matching cards of the same rank, three or more consecutive cards of the same suit, and one unmatched card. A full house consists of 3 cards of the same rank and 2 cards of another rank, and a straight consists of 5 consecutive cards of the same suit. A flush consists of five consecutive cards of the same rank, but in different suits.