The Basics of Poker


Almost all poker games are played using chips. The chips are easier to count than cash. Each chip represents a different dollar amount.

A pot is the aggregate of all bets made by all players in one deal. A pot can be won by the highest hand. The pot is also won by a bet that no other player calls.

The first player is the dealer. Each player is dealt cards in rotation. The dealer must offer a shuffled pack to the opponent.

A card is dealt to each player and a turn is taken to bet. The bet is “call” if the player believes that his hand is good, or “raise” if the player thinks that his hand is bad. The betting continues until everyone has made a call or a fold.

In some games, a card is designated as a wild card. A wild card is a card that takes any suit. Sometimes a jack of hearts is designated as a wild card.

A five-card poker hand beats a straight flush. The lowest possible hand is 6-4-3-2-A. The hand must have two distinct pairs and a fifth card. A king of diamonds is rarely designated as a wild card.

A hand is won when the highest card breaks ties. If two players have a four of a kind with the same rank, the high card breaks the tie. If two players have a four of another rank, the high card outside of that rank wins the pot.