Poker is a card game that involves betting and wagering. It can be played by two to seven players, and is usually played with a 52-card English deck.
Poker can be played for money or with chips, which are worth a fixed amount of value. The cards are shuffled and dealt in turn, followed by a number of betting rounds. After the last round, each player turns their hands face-up.
The hand is ranked in inverse proportion to its mathematical frequency, with the highest possible hand being 7-5-4-3-2 in two or more suits (aces are optional). Bluffing is an important aspect of the game; if a player makes a bet that is not called by all opponents, he wins the pot without having to show his cards.
There are a number of different poker variants, each with its own rules. A typical game begins with a dealer who shuffles, cuts, and deals the appropriate number of cards to the players one at a time, beginning with the player to their left.
In each deal there are a number of betting intervals, during which players may bet or raise, and a showdown occurs when all the cards have been revealed. A pot is created from the bets of all the players in the current deal.
In pot-limit contests, a player may raise only by the total amount in the pot, regardless of the size of the original bet. If the amount in the pot is less than the amount of the new bet, the player may choose to check or fold.