Poker is a card game in which players place chips (representing money) into the pot according to the rules of the particular poker variant being played. These bets are voluntarily made by players who believe they have positive expected value or who are trying to bluff other players for various strategic reasons. While the result of any individual hand largely involves chance, over time poker players make decisions based on probability theory, psychology, and game theory.
A hand in poker consists of 5 cards. The highest possible hand is called a Royal Flush. Other high-ranking hands include a Straight and a Three of a Kind.
When a player’s turn comes, they can either check the pot and pass their cards to the dealer or raise it. If they raise it, the other players must call their new bet or fold. Typically, players say “call” to indicate that they want to add the same amount of money to the pot as the person before them.
During the first betting round, or pre-flop, players will be given two cards face down. If their card is higher in rank than the other, they will say “hit” or “stay.” If their cards are lower in rank, they will say “fold.”
Once this betting round is complete the dealer puts a third card on the table that everyone can use. This is called the flop. During the third betting round, called the turn, another community card is added to the board and players can again bet or check their cards. Once the final betting hand, or river, is over, the cards are revealed and the highest ranked hand wins the pot.