The Basics of Poker


Poker is a gambling game where you play against other players. It’s one of the most popular games in the world and can be played with poker chips, cards or cash.

Before the deal begins, each player may be required to make a contribution to the pot, called an ante. In each betting interval, the first player to make a bet is said to “bet,” a player who exactly matches the previous bet is said to “call,” and a player who bets more than the previous bettor is said to “raise.”

Once all players have made their bets in the current betting round, the bet amounts are gathered into the pot. When the last bettor folds, the pot is awarded to the highest hand that hasn’t folded.

There are 10 basic ways to win a 5-card poker hand. These include:

High Card (Pair of cards)

Pair of Cards, like two 2s and a 5th card

Three of a Kind – like three 4s or five 10s

Straight Flush

Royal Flush

Ace high straight flush

The best natural poker hand is a Straight Flush. It consists of five cards in order, such as 4-5-6-7-8.

There are also some non-natural poker hands that can be won, such as a Full House or Four of a Kind. However, these hands have to be matched with three other cards that don’t qualify as a pair.