The Basics of Poker


Often played in casinos, poker is a game of skill and chance. Although there are many variants, the game is played with a standard pack of cards ranked from Ace to King. The goal is to make the highest hand possible.

Each player is dealt two cards. The first player to the left has the right to “call” or fold, while the player on the right has the right to raise. The betting rounds continue in a clockwise direction until all players have folded or been forced to call.

The player with the best hand wins the pot. The pot is the aggregate of all bets made by all players during the round. Occasionally, the pot may split between the highest and lowest hands. This can occur if multiple people tie for the highest card.

Ties are broken by the highest unmatched card, which usually breaks a pair or higher. A high card outside of a four of a kind also breaks ties. A high pair and a high flush break ties.

Typically, the minimum hand is a pair of jacks. However, there are games that allow a pair of kings to be the minimum.

Players can also bluff. This is when a player claims to have the best hand, in order to convince other players to call or fold. The person who makes the bluff is called a bluffer. Some games require the bluffer to place a small ante into the pot. The ante can be as small as a few cents, or it can be a blind bet.