Poker is a card game played by 2 or more players. It can be a fun and interesting game to play with friends. Poker can also be a good way to learn about strategy. It requires a combination of luck and skill to win the game. There are many different forms of poker, but most have the same basic rules. The object of the game is to win a “pot,” which is the total of bets made by all players in any one deal. This pot can be won by having the highest-ranking hand or by making a bet that no other player calls.

The game begins with each player being dealt 2 cards face down. There is then a round of betting, started by the player to the left of the dealer. The player can call, raise, or fold their hand during this betting phase.

After the betting, another 3 cards are dealt to the table. This is called the flop. Players can now create a hand of 5 cards, combining the two cards they have in their hands with the five community cards on the table. A good poker hand must contain at least three of the four ranks (aces, kings, queens, and jacks) and must have at least one unmatched card.

Some games require a mandatory bet before each hand, known as the blind bet. This bet can replace the ante or be in addition to it, depending on the game.