The Basics of Poker


There are a few different types of poker hands. One of the most common hands is called the “nuts” and consists of the best five cards in a row of the same suit. Other hands are known as straights and suited combinations, and the best hand is a pair of sixes, but this is the rarest case. Poker variations are described later in this chapter. For more than 10 players, two separate games can be played.

After the third betting phase, each player receives a card face-up. A final betting phase follows with the player who has the best face-up cards. The winner of the hand receives the entire pot, which is equal to the total of all bets. This betting phase may include many rounds of re-bets. However, if a player folds, he can only win the pot that he contributed to.

Players can establish a special fund called a kitty. Players can build their kitty by cutting a low-denomination chip from any pot with a number of raises. The kitty is shared among all players and is used to buy new decks of cards or food. All players are entitled to a share of the kitty, but those who leave the game before it ends are not entitled to a piece of the kitty.

Poker was invented in the 1800s. Joseph Cowell reported playing the game in 1829, and four players were betting on which hand was the best. It spread quickly across the country, and shortly afterward a 52-card deck was introduced. There are many variations of poker. The most popular one is Texas hold ’em. This is a great way to learn the game. However, if you can’t stand the competitive aspect, you can always switch to a less intense variation of the game.