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The Basics of Poker

The Basics of Poker


Poker is a card game for two to eight players, with each player betting chips (representing money) into the pot before the cards are dealt. The aim is to make a winning poker hand with your own two cards and the five community cards. Players can also bet that they have a better hand than their opponents and hope to win the bets of other players, or they may bluff. A high hand beats a low hand, and the highest pair wins ties.

Before the cards are dealt, one or more players must place a small amount of money into the pot (representing the other players’ bets). This is called posting a blind or making a bring-in bet. The player to his or her left is then required to raise this bet by a certain percentage of the amount posted by the person to their right.

Then the players are dealt 5 cards and can decide whether to discard 1 to 3 cards and draw new ones, or to “hold” their cards as they are. Each player then places the rest of his or her money, called bets, into the pot if he or she wishes to continue betting.

The game is won by the player with the best 5-card poker hand, and the winner takes all the chips in the pot. There are often rules for how this money is shared after the game is over, and some players may leave before the winning player has won all the chips in the pot.