Poker Basics

Poker is any of a huge variety of casino-type card games where players place wagers over which hand lies with them according to the rules of the game. Most poker aficionados (including me!) think of poker as a game of skill, and indeed there are rules for each level of poker – from the very easy Texas Holdem, all the way up to the most difficult royal flush in poker – so you can easily master the game, although of course you don’t need to be the kind of poker player who wins every time, because if you do then you’re wasting your time!


In a poker game, a ‘pot’ is what a player has to hold in terms of chips in order to be able to legally take part in the game. If there are five players in a poker game, the pot is usually split between them. The smaller the poker table is, the bigger the pot; the smaller the table, the smaller the pot that each player gets. The size of a pot is usually related to the amount of money that players have put into the pot (in case it drops below a certain size, the players are not allowed to draw more money into the pot). Generally speaking, the pots are generally small, and the winning combination will often depend on a lot of factors, including the strength of each player and the amount of chips left in the pot.

Of the four suits, poker includes Ace/King, Queen/King, Jack/Ten and Deuce/10. Aces and Kings are allowed to have only one card in the pot, while queens and tens are allowed to have two cards in the pot. So the basic principle is: the highest value card – Ace – highest value card – King – second highest value card – queen | second highest value card – pot | pot odds} After laying out their hands and having dealt with their cards, the players are dealt a hand and are then dealt another card, followed by another new hand and so on until all the required betting rounds are complete. After the last betting round is complete, the pot odds are adjusted and the game is turned over to the house. The house will then do what is necessary to finish the match and will usually win, taking back the pot along with the chips. In some cases, the house may win the match and take back the prize as well, but this rarely happens because usually the house always bets out regardless of whether or not they come out with a prize.