Poker is a card game in which players bet on the strength of their hand. It is a game of chance, but it also requires skill and strategy. Poker is played in private homes, in card rooms at casinos and by professional gamblers around the world. It can be played for pennies or thousands of dollars.
At the start of a game, each player buys in with a set amount of chips. The number of chips a player has is called his or her “chip stack.” During the game, players place chips into the pot voluntarily, choosing actions based on probability, psychology and game theory. The pot is the pool of money raised by all players. The winner takes all of the chips in the pot.
After each player has bought in, 2 mandatory bets called blinds are placed into the pot by the players to the left of the dealer. After these bets are made, each player is dealt 2 cards face-down (hidden from the other players). These two hidden cards are known as a player’s hole or pocket. A round of betting then begins.
During each round of betting, players may call, raise or fold. Some players may also put all of their remaining chips into the pot, a move called an All-in. Depending on the rules of the game, players may also draw replacement cards for their hand. A Full House contains 3 matching cards of one rank, a Straight has 5 consecutive cards of the same suit and a Flush is any 5 cards of the same suit.