Poker is a game of chance played with a normal 52-card deck. Players make wagers on poker hands, using plastic chips or coins.
The goal of the game is to have the best hand and win the pot. Unlike other games, a player may bluff and bet for a higher hand than they actually have.
A hand is formed when two cards from the same suit are paired. Two or more players have the same card or a pair, and the hand is broken by the highest unmatched card. The highest-ranking hand is 6-4-3-2A, and the lowest is 7-5-4-3-2 in two or more suits.
In most versions, the dealer deals each hand one at a time. However, there are some variations. For example, the game stud uses a full 52-card deck, and a wild card was introduced around 1875.
Poker games can be played with any number of players. However, the ideal number of players is six to eight. One player has the right to make the first bet. This is known as the active player.
Players may check, raise, or fold. If the first player does not bet, other players must call or match the amount of the previous bet.
After the final betting round, there is usually more than one player in contention. This results in some side pots. Some other players may try to improve their hand by trading cards.
Players may shuffle their cards or choose to discard them. They may also be forced to make a bet. Forced bets are known as ante, blind, or forced.