Poker is a card game of chance and strategy. It is a game of betting where players make decisions based on probability, psychology and game theory. The aim of the game is to win a pot, the aggregate sum of all bets made by the players in a given deal. This can be achieved by getting a high-ranking poker hand or bluffing other players.

The game originated in France and spread to the United States. There are many different poker games, but most have the same general structure. The game starts with 2 mandatory bets (called blind bets) being put into the pot by the two players to the left of the dealer. A shuffle is then made, and cards are dealt one at a time starting with the player to the left of the dealer. The first round of betting begins once all players have received their two hole cards.

Then players can decide to call, raise or fold their hand. If they raise, they have to make a bet equal to the amount raised by the person before them. This is known as the “equalization method”. A player who raises may also choose to increase their stake again, or if they are unwilling to do this they can simply fold. The winner is the player with a high poker hand, which is revealed at the end of the betting phase.