The Basics of Poker

Poker is a game of incomplete information (you don’t know your opponents’ cards) and bets made with chips (money). The goal is to make the best 5-card hand you can using your two personal cards and the five community cards. Players may also bluff, which is when they raise their bet hoping that the other players will call it because they think they have a good hand.

The pack of cards is shuffled, cut by the player to the left of the dealer (a position called the button) and then dealt one card at a time in rotation around the table. After each deal, the player to the left of the button places a bet into the pot. The player to the right of the button has the option to either fold or call.

After the betting round ends, another card is dealt face up. This is called the “flop”. Players must then decide whether to fold a bad hand, try to improve it or to bluff.

A flush is a sequence of 5 matching cards of the same rank. A straight is 5 consecutive cards of different ranks. A full house is three cards of the same rank and 2 matching cards of another rank. A pair is two cards of the same rank and one unmatched card. If no one else has a higher hand, the player who raised the most bet wins the pot. Some games allow replacement cards to be drawn after the flop.