The game of poker has many different variants, but all involve betting over a series of rounds and aiming for a five-card hand. You can bet to make other players fold if you believe your cards are good, or try to deceive them with bluffing. The player with the highest hand wins the pot. The most important skill in poker is assessing your opponent’s moves as well as your own, and learning to make them both count.
The cards used in poker are the standard 52-card pack (although some games use multiple packs or add jokers) and each card is ranked from high to low: Ace, King, Queen, Jack, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4. Some variations of the game also include wild cards which can take on any suit.
A poker game is usually played with a minimum of 6 or 7 players, and the object is to win the “pot” – all the money bet by the players in that hand. Each player places his or her chips into the pot in turn, either calling the bet made by the player before them or raising it.
When you say “call,” you’re matching the size of the last bet. When you say “raise,” you’re increasing the size of your own bet. You can also decide to “fold” your cards, giving them back to the dealer and walking away from the table without making a bet. This is a safe option if you have poor hole cards.