The Basics of Poker

Poker is a game of card playing in which players wager on the strength of their hands. It can be played with any number of players but the ideal number is 6. The object is to win the pot, which is the total of all the bets placed in a single deal. This may be done by having the highest hand, or by bluffing and forcing players with superior hands to call your bet.

The game is played using chips of varying values. Each player must buy a certain amount of chips to participate in the hand and these are known as “buying in”. Each chip represents a different value depending on its color. A white chip is worth the minimum ante, a blue chip is worth 10 whites, and so on. Players place their chips into the pot in clockwise order.

Once the betting has begun, each player has two cards dealt to them which they cannot see or use until their turn. The player to the left of the dealer position must first put in a small bet called the blind, followed by the player to their right who puts in a larger bet called the big blind.

When it is a player’s turn, they can say “call” to make a bet of the same value as the last person’s raise or they can simply raise their own bet. A player can also fold if they don’t think their hand has a chance of winning.