Generally, poker is played with a standard pack of 52 cards. The deck may be face up, or it may be cut into pieces and dealt one at a time. Some games use multiple packs, or use wild cards, which can be used to add any suit to a hand.
Poker hands are usually formed by drawing five cards. The aim is to have the highest ranked hand of cards, and players wager over that hand. Various factors affect the frequency of action and the size of the pot. Some games also involve a side pot, which is created by additional money bet by the remaining players.
The first person to act is the player to the left of the big blind. This player must post a big blind or small blind, depending on the game. He or she sits immediately to the left of the button.
The dealer then deals the cards to each player. Each player may choose to discard up to three of their cards. The players can then take new cards from the top of the deck.
Betting continues until all but one player folds. The winner is the player with the best hand. When a hand reaches a tie, the high card breaks the tie. If the tie breaks, the player who holds the second highest card takes the pot.
If the winner does not show, the game goes to a showdown, when the winning hand is revealed. If there is a draw, the pot is split equally between all the players.