Poker is a card game of skill that has become one of the most popular card games in the world. In its most basic form, it consists of a betting interval that lasts until all players have put in equal amounts or all have folded. The best hand wins the pot, which is the sum total of all bets made during a particular deal.
The game is played in many different forms, and can involve any number of players from two to 14. In cash games, there are usually five or more people sitting around a table. Each player has a stack of chips that they can bet with, and they have the option to pass (fold) on their turn to act.
During the first betting phase of a Poker deal, each player places an initial forced bet into the pot. This is known as the ante or blind bet. Once these bets have been placed, the dealer shuffles and cuts the cards, then deals each player 2 cards face-down, which are hidden from other players (called their hole or pocket).
Players then place additional bets into the pot according to the rules of the game, which vary by variant. After a betting interval ends, each remaining player reveals their hand and the best Poker hand wins the pot. The highest hand is a Royal Flush (A, K, Q, J, 10, all of the same suit); four of a kind (four cards of the same number/picture) is the second highest; and a straight is three or more consecutive cards in the same suit.