Poker is one of the most popular card games around.
The game became popular because of its television exposure including attention from celebrities.
If you are interested in joining the fun, learning poker is easy.
The following sections will guide you through the basic rules of poker.
Understanding how the game works will help you adapt to other variations easily.
Also read: Poker Hands: Should You Have Favorites?
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Understanding the Basics
The ace often plays high though there are instances it can get low. You can add a joker or other wild cards.
During the showdown, remaining players will compare their hands based on the hand rankings. Suits cannot break ties including cards after the fight.
Only the best five cards for each hand can be used for comparison. If there is a tie, players with winning hands split the pot.
Wildcards can open a spot for another hand, five of a kind. The hand is often higher compared to a straight flush.
If there is a joker, you can only use it to complete a flush or straight. You can also use it as an ace.
A joker cannot be used as a true wild card.
Learn more: How To Play Poker
Learning Poker Hand Variations
The person who takes home the pot has the highest-valued hand.
Your goal is to get the highest possible hand.
It is impossible to win a game without knowing the poker hand variations. The variations tell you at what advantage you may have over other players.
If no one has a winning hand or there are two players with a similar hand (for example full houses), the pot goes to the player with the highest valued card.
In this case, ace is the highest. One way to learn the variations is to print out a ranking of poker hands. This can help you memorize important combinations faster.
Place a token bet or an “ante” (pronounced ant-ee) in the pot.
You can find the pot in the center of the table normally.
Some players take it literally and place a pot in the middle for everyone to bet. All players pitch in equal amounts of the bet.
Currencies can range from nickels, poker chips, car keys and bills among others.
The winner takes all of the pot.
Dealing or Losing
After showing or shuffling, the dealer hands out the cards face down beginning with the player on the immediate left.
Cards are handed out continuously clockwise.
You get one card at a time until the dealer completes the round giving everyone one five cards.
The deck is placed back in the center of the table.
Also check out: Poker Rules You Need To Remember Else You Die (Or Go Broke)
Studying Your Cards
Everyone will get a chance to look at their cards for a moment.
Check if you have a strong hand or not. Beginners often end up revealing how strong their hand is.
This is called a tell.
Be careful of the following giveaway hints other players look for in a beginner: lack or extreme eye contract, shallow breathing and flexing facial muscles among others.
Make sure you show little of these as possible. This will give an upper hand when playing. Practice your “poker face.” The better you are at doing poker face, the better chances you can win the poker game.
The first player can either place the first bet (open the game) or pass the turn to the next player (check). Once a player opens the pot, other players can bet specific amounts of currency.
All players who already took their turns can choose to:
- See or call – continue playing the game by betting an equivalent currency in the pot
- Fold – quit the game. You simply place your cards face down on the tablet. Your bet stays on the pot.
After all the players decided, everyone left with a turn will have the two mentioned options plus the choice to make a raise. A raise means you continue playing in the game by betting more than what the previous player placed in the pot.
If a player raises, everyone who took their turns already should fold or see again. The next player takes his or her turn.
Also a good read: Poker For Dummies Review
Learning How to Draw
Once all players finished their turns (including those who checked), take out three cards you do not want. Replace them with new ones. This happens in turns as well. The player on the left of the dealer starts the exchange with everyone taking turns in clockwise.
Remove the cards you think will not help in getting a winning hand. You can keep all three or replace all. If you want to replace the cards, put them face down on the table. Make sure no one sees what they are.
You will go through another set of betting. Like before, the player on the dealer’s left will open or check. The check may continue until another player opens.
Once a player opens, other players can raise, see or fold. You will notice more people will choose to fold if they think their weak hand is not up to the bet.
Exposing Your cards
Everyone show their hand by turning the cards over.
The player with the highest value will take the pot.
Playing poker is not as hard as it sounds.
It may sound confusing at first but play it a number of times will help you familiarize the rules. Try to observe how other seasoned players do it.
Taking cues from those learning for a very long time can be a good experience.
You should also learn the art of bluffing. It is one of the essential skills in poker.
Knowing how not give away your hand can give you winnings.