The Basics of Poker


Poker is a card game that involves betting between players. The objective is to make a five-card poker hand that beats the other players’ hands. The game has many different variations but they all share a few things in common. The first thing is that all players must put in money before seeing their cards. This creates a pot right away and encourages competition. Another important thing is to know what hands beat which. This is easily done by looking at a chart. For example, a flush beats a straight and three of a kind beats two pair. Knowing this can help you decide whether to call a bet or not.

When the dealer deals out the cards there is a betting round. Each player can either call or raise the bet. This can force other players to fold if they have a weak hand. It can also increase the value of your hand if you have a good one. The second part of the game is when the dealer puts down three more cards that anyone can use. These are called the flop. If your hand is good then you should bet as much as possible to force other players out.

The third part of the game is when the dealer puts a fourth card that everyone can use on the table. If you have a good hand then you should again raise as much as possible to increase the value of your hand. This will force other players to fold if they have bad hands and can win you the game.

After the fifth and final community card is revealed it’s time for the “showdown” or deciding which hand is highest. The winner is declared by the dealer or by a player with a high enough hand. If you are new to this then it is best to ask a more experienced player to show you how this is done.

In poker each player is given chips that represent the money they will be using to place bets. A white chip is worth the minimum ante, while a red chip is worth five whites and a blue chip is worth ten whites. The first player to the left of the dealer makes the first bet. Then each player, in turn, can choose to call the bet (by putting the same amount of chips into the pot as the player before them) or raise it.

It is usually better to play from late positions because you can manipulate the pot on later betting streets. You should avoid calling re-raises with weak hands from early positions because you’ll likely lose your chips to an aggressor.