The Basics of Poker


Poker is a card game in which players wager chips on the outcome of a hand. The game usually involves a minimum of two players and the object is to win the pot, which consists of all bets made during a single deal. The number of cards dealt and the number of players affects the rules of play, but the basic concepts are similar across games.

The first round of betting begins when one player makes a bet. Each player can call that bet, in which case they put the same amount of chips into the pot as the last person; raise, or put more in than the previous player; or drop out, which means that they forfeit their hand and are out of the betting for the rest of the hand. The players then show their hands. The best five-card hand wins.

In the course of a hand, players may also try to win by bluffing. They can do this by betting that they have a good hand, hoping that players with superior hands will call their bet and give up their own. A good poker hand consists of five consecutive cards of the same suit, or four of a kind.

Most poker games are played with chips. A white chip, or the lightest colored chip, is worth a certain amount of money called an ante or blind bet; a red chip is worth five whites; and blue chips are worth 10 whites. At the beginning of a game, each player puts in a predetermined amount of chips.