How to Play Poker


Poker is a game of skill in which players compete to build the best hand out of five cards. The player who makes the best hand takes the pot.

Poker games may be played with any number of players. An ideal number is six to eight. During the game, the dealer is in charge of dealing the cards to each player. Each player buys a certain amount of chips.

Before the game begins, the dealer assigns each chip a value. For example, a blue chip is worth two, four or five reds. Depending on the poker game, the chips are also color-coded: white, green, or black.

After the deal, the player who was first to bet has the privilege of making the first bet. This bet is known as the ante. Usually, the ante is a small bet, which is usually either $1 or $5.

Once the bet is made, the other players must match the bet, called a forced bet. A forced bet is sometimes called a blind.

When no other players call the bet, the player who made the bet has the right to show the hand. If no other player calls, the player with the best hand wins. In some poker games, the pot may be split between the highest and lowest hands.

Ties are broken when a high card breaks them. For example, if two players have four of a kind, a high card outside of that rank is enough to break ties.