Poker is a card game in which the object is to win the pot (the sum of all bets made during a single hand). A poker game can be played with any number of players, but most games are best when there are 6-8 players.

The game begins with each player placing an ante (a mandatory bet amount that varies by game) and then being dealt two cards, face down. Each player can then choose whether to play the hand or fold. If they choose to play the hand they will then bet into the middle, in clockwise order. The highest hand wins the pot.

After the first round of betting is complete a third card is dealt, this is known as the flop. There will be another round of betting, again starting with the player to the left of the dealer. Then there is one final card, called the river which will be dealt face up. There will be another round of betting and then each player will reveal their hands.

The most common poker hands are pair, three of a kind, straight, and flush. A flush is five consecutive cards of the same suit. A straight is four cards of the same rank in sequence. A full house is three of a kind and two unmatched cards. A high card is used to break ties. Playing in position is key in poker, this gives you information on your opponents and allows you to make more accurate value bets.