Poker is a card game in which players bet with chips that are placed into the center of the table. The object of the game is to win a “pot,” which is the total amount of bets made in one deal. The pot may be won by having the highest-ranking hand, or by making a bet that no other player calls.

A deck of cards is used, typically 52 cards, though some games use multiple packs or add jokers. The cards are ranked (from high to low) as Ace, King, Queen, Jack, 10, 9, 7, 6, 5 and 4. There are four suits, spades, hearts, diamonds, and clubs, although some games have wild cards that can take on any suit or rank.

In most games, each player puts an initial stake into the pot — called a forced bet — before being dealt cards. These bets can be in the form of an ante, blind bet, or bring-in bet. A number of betting intervals follow, during which each player has the option to raise their bets or drop them.

When all betting is complete, the remaining players reveal their hands in a showdown. If no player has a pair or better, the high card break is used to determine a winner. If there is a tie between two hands that have a pair, the higher rank of the second pair wins. If a hand has three distinct pairs, the highest rank of the third pair breaks the tie.