Poker is a game of strategy in which players bet in order to win money. The goal of the game is to have the best hand at the end of each betting round.

There are different poker variants, each with its own rules and payout structure. While the basic principles of each variant are similar, variations can result in a significant amount of strategy and variance.

The Deal

Each player is dealt a complete hand of cards, which they must use to make their best hand. Depending on the particular game, this hand can include any combination of cards that are not immediately obvious.

Bets / Raise & Fold

Each betting interval, or round, begins when the first player to the left in turn makes a bet of some number of chips. This is called a “call.” The next player to the left must either “raise” by adding more chips, or “fold,” which means they put no chips into the pot and discard their hand.

Showdown / Flop

After the flop, or first betting round, each player has 5 cards. They can use these cards to make the best 5-card hand possible.

The best hand usually contains three or more cards of one rank, and two or more cards of another rank. The most common combinations are a full house, flush, straight, and 3 of a kind.