The Official Poker Rules

Poker is one of a number of card games in which players bet chips that represent real money on the strength of their hands. The game has a strong bluffing element, and minimizing losses with weak hands while maximising wins with strong ones is the key skill. The game can be played with just a couple of people at a home, for pennies or matchsticks at a charity event, or in countless poker rooms and casinos around the world.

Unlike some card games, such as bridge, where the highest-value hand wins, the rules of Poker specify that only the best five-card hand wins. This allows players to bet aggressively against other players, which is often a good strategy. The game is typically played with a deck of 52 cards, although some forms use fewer or more. Each player places a bet into the pot before the cards are dealt, and each betting round has a certain amount of time in which to raise or call.

If a player is dealt a card that is deemed to be exposed (by being dealt face up by the dealer), there are various procedures to follow depending on the form of Poker being played. This will usually involve the player announcing that their card is exposed before they play it, and the card being replaced in the deck.

If no dedicated dealer is present, each player is assigned a position at the table, indicated by a button. This moves clockwise after each hand, and indicates where the action starts for the next deal.