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The Basics of Poker

Poker is a card game played between two or more players. It is a game of chance, but also requires a significant amount of skill and strategy. The object of the game is to have the best five-card hand at the end of a betting round. The winning player claims all the chips in the pot. Typically, the remaining players will share the money in some way.

The game starts with 2 mandatory bets (called blind bets) that are placed into the pot before each player is dealt 2 cards. These cards are hidden from the other players, and are called the player’s hole or pocket cards. Once everyone has their hole cards, another betting phase begins with the player to the left of the big blind. 3 additional community cards are then revealed and are called the flop.

After the flop, each player must decide whether to keep their current hand or draw 1 to 3 replacement cards. Depending on the rules of the game, players may also raise their bets at this time.

If a player wants to raise their bet, they will say “I call” or “call” to indicate that they are raising the same amount as the last person. This must be done verbally, but can usually be done with either cash or chips.

Whenever possible, it is recommended that players use poker chips to make bets. Typically, a white chip is worth one of the minimum ante or bet amounts; a red chip is worth five of those whites; and a blue chip is worth 10 of the whites.