Poker is a card game that involves betting. In its most basic form, you place a forced bet to get your cards, called an ante or blind bet (the amount varies by game). You then have the option of calling, raising, or folding. The player with the highest hand wins the pot.

When you play poker, your goal is to make the best hand. You can do this by examining your cards and comparing them to the other players’ hands. Alternatively, you can try to win by bluffing, in which case you try to trick your opponents into believing that you have a superior hand than you actually do.

A poker hand comprises five cards. A full house contains three matching cards of one rank and two matching cards of another, while a flush is five consecutive cards of the same suit. A straight contains five cards of the same rank in sequence but from more than one suit. Finally, a pair is two distinct cards of the same rank. High card breaks ties.

In poker, there are many different ways to bet, but all bets must go into a central pot, called the pot of the game. Usually there are several betting intervals in a hand, and each player has the opportunity to bet more or less than the players before them.