Basic Rules of Poker

Whether you play poker for the money or for fun, there are plenty of variations to choose from. But before you begin, there are some basic rules to remember.

First, there is the ante, which is usually a small amount, but can vary depending on the rules of the game. Then there is the blind, which is a forced bet. It can be as little as $1 or as much as $5. This gives the player something to chase while waiting for their turn.

After the ante is put in, the dealer deals two cards to each player. The cards are face up and the player must show Jacks-or-Better.

The dealer then has the last chance to shuffle. Once he has done so, he must offer the shuffled deck to the opponent for cut.

The highest card in the hand breaks a tie. Two four of a kind beats one five of a kind, and two pairs beat a three of a kind. But two pairs beat a pair of twos.

The “showdown” occurs after the last betting round. This is the time to show off your hand. If you are lucky, you will win a prize.

A “straight” is a sequence of five cards in sequential order. This is not necessarily the best hand. For instance, a straight with two jacks beats a straight with two tens.

A hand that consists of five cards in the same suit is called a flush. A flush is better than a straight, but not as good as a straight with two jacks.