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Basic Poker Rules

Texas Holdem is the most popular poker variant. Poker is a card game in which players with fully or partially-concealed cards make wagers into a communal pot during the course of a hand, after which the pot is awarded to the player or players with the best combination of cards.

Multiplayer Poker is usually played with a standard 4-suit 52-card deck, but a joker or other wild cards may be added. The game is commonly played in card rooms (often within casinos), in private homes, and increasingly, on the Internet.

The card ranking is as follows: Ace (the highest), King, Queen, Jack, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2 (the lowest), Ace (this may also be the lowest card depending on the variation being used, but it is usually the highest).

There are four suits: Spades, Hearts, Diamonds and Clubs. No suit is higher than another. All poker hands contain five cards.

The use of Wild Cards depends on the variations and these take on whatever rank or suit the player wants these to take. A wild card can either be a separate card added like a joker or the player may specify a certain card in the standard deck to be wild like deuces, or whatever else.

The number of cards dealt is dependent on what type of game is being played.

During a given betting round, each player in turn may take one of these actions:

  • Check which is a bet of zero that does not forfeit a player's interest in the pot;

  • Bet or Raise which is a non-zero wager that is greater than preceding bets. All successive players must match or exceed this or else forfeit all interest in the pot;

  • Call which is a non-zero bet equal to a preceding bet that maintains a player's interest in the pot; or

  • Fold which is a surrender of interest in the pot in response to another player's bet, accompanied by the loss of one's cards and previous bets

Betting usually proceeds in a circle until each player has either called all bets or folded. Different poker games have various numbers of betting rounds interspersed with the receipt or replacement of cards.

Betting limits apply to the amount a player may open or raise, and come in four common forms:

  • No Limit
    A game played with a no limit betting structure allows each player to raise any amount of his stake at any time (subject to the table stakes rules and any other rules about raising).

  • Pot Limit
    A game played with a pot limit betting structure allows any player to raise up to an amount equal to the size of the whole pot before the raise.

  • Fixed Limit
    In a game played with a fixed limit betting structure, a player chooses only whether to bet or not - the amount is fixed by rule. Commonly later betting rounds specify higher bets than earlier rounds.

  • Spread limit
    A game played with a spread limit betting structure allows a player to raise any amount within a specified range.

The player with the highest hand wins the game. The poker hand rankings are discussed here.

ONGOING POKER TOURNAMENTS

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UPCOMING POKER TOURNAMENTS

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POKER TOURNAMENT WINNERS

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POKER RULES

Texas Holdem is a Poker game in which players with fully or partially-concealed cards make wagers into a communal pot during the course of a hand, after which the pot is awarded to the player or players with the best combination of cards.

COMMUNITY POKER

Community card poker is a type or variant of poker that uses cards that are dealt face up to the center of the table and shared by all players. In these games, each player is dealt privately an incomplete hand ("hole cards")...

ETIQUETTE

In poker play, there seems to be a slightly different set of rules existing across every casino.

DICTIONARY

Consult our online poker dictionary to enhance your knowledge about common poker terms.

CHIPS

These serve as the currency of the game. Most games are played with chips or coin-shaped tokens of uniform size and weight...