Poker is a family of popular gambling card games. The basic aim is to arrange your cards to the strongest possible hand at the table to win the pot, which makes it a comparing card game.
You can play Poker with a deck of 52 playing cards and multiple people, one of which is always the dealer. The dealer is considered rather impartial. But in home settings, the dealer may also partake as a player.
At first, the dealer sets up the game by shuffling all cards and dealing cards to each player and the table, if applicable.
Then you start playing by arranging your cards to the strongest possible hand and estimating its strength compared to the other possible hands at the table. If you consider your hand to be strong, you can place a bet on it. If not, you can fold.
Any bets go toward the pot, which will usually be poured out to the player with the strongest hand at the end of the round.
Standard poker hand rankings apply to determining the strength of a hand. It goes from strongest to weakest:
- Straight flush (five cards of consecutive rank in a single suit)
- Four of a kind (four cards of matching rank)
- Full house (one pair and three of a kind)
- Flush (five cards of the same suit)
- Straight (five cards of consecutive rank)
- Three of a kind (three cards of matching rank)
- Two pair (two different groups of two cards of matching rank)
- One pair (two cards of matching rank)
- High card (or no pair or nothing)
There are various types of poker games, each with its own set of rules, gameplay, and strategies. They can be split into three main categories:
- Draw Poker: Players receive five cards they can use during play. They can also draw cards to replace cards of the initial deal. During play, each player only sees their own cards. Most popular variants: Five Card Draw and Triple Draw.
- Hold’em: In addition to each player’s hand cards, community cards are revealed on the table. All players can count these face-up cards toward their own hand. Most popular variants: Texas Hold’em and Omaha Hold’em.
- Stud: In addition to each player’s hand cards, there are also open cards as part of each hand. Every player can see those cards. But each player can still only use the cards that are part of their own hand, whether they are publicly visible or not. Most popular variants: Seven Card Stud and Razz.
Poker is a popular card game that is played worldwide. It has been popular in the USA for over a century and is played in both casual and professional settings. The game is nearly as popular in Europe and Australia, but also becoming increasingly popular in South America and Asia.