The Basics of Poker

Poker is played with a standard 52-card deck. The cards are dealt face down to each player. When it’s their turn to act, players can fold, call or raise. Raise means increasing the amount of money you’re betting by a predetermined percentage (normally twice the big blind). In no-limit poker, players can bet all of their chips.

The game’s popularity surged in the 2000s, with Texas hold ’em replacing seven-card stud as the most popular form of poker. Hold ’em is the game played in the main event of the World Series of Poker and the World Poker Tour.

A full house in poker consists of three matching cards of the same rank and two matching community cards. The highest-ranking card decides the winner. A pair of aces is the best possible hand in poker.

In some games, players may be allowed to use a mobile phone at the table as long as the ring tone or music is inaudible and not disruptive to the game. Other phones, devices and communication tools are also generally prohibited as they may delay the game or create a competitive advantage for other players.

It’s generally accepted that players can make special rules, known as “house rules,” to suit their personal preferences and the game’s style, but these rules must be formally written down. A common house rule is to establish a special fund, known as the “kitty,” to pay for new decks of cards and other necessities. Any remaining chips in the kitty when the game ends are then distributed among the players.