The Basics of Poker


The game of poker is a card game that has a significant amount of chance involved, but a lot of skill as well. It is a game that requires patience and a strong understanding of player psychology and mathematical expectations.

When you play a hand of poker, you first have to ante something (the exact amount of money is up to the game, but it’s usually at least a nickel). Then you’re dealt 2 cards and betting starts. When it’s your turn to bet you have the choice of calling, raising, or folding. Many people will say that it’s wrong to fold, especially beginner players, but it is often the right move. Typically, when you fold, you’re saving your chips and staying alive for another hand.

Once the first betting round is complete the dealer deals 3 more cards face up on the table. These are called community cards and anyone can use them. Then the third stage of betting begins, this is called the flop. At this point you have the option to call or raise your bet and decide whether to continue to “the showdown”.

During these stages of betting players reveal their hands one at a time. When the betting is over, the player with the best 5 card poker hand wins the pot. In case of a tie, the pot is split between players that called during the last betting round. If nobody called in the last betting round then the pot is awarded to the players that were all-in prior to the last betting round.