Poker is a card game where players compete to make the best hand using their two personal cards plus the five community cards on the table. It is a game of chance, but also requires considerable amounts of skill, strategy, and psychology. The game is played in rounds and the player with the highest-ranking poker hand wins the pot. The game can be played by two to fourteen people, though in most forms it is played with six or seven players.
Before the deal each player is required to contribute to a common pool called the pot, usually by making forced bets called an ante or blind bet (or both). The dealer then shuffles the cards and deals them to each player in turn, beginning with the player on their left. The player may be required to check, to call, or raise. A player who raises on a specific betting round is said to open the action for that round.
A poker hand is a group of cards that form a rank, which may consist of one pair or two pairs, three of a kind, straight, or flush. A high card is a single card of the highest rank. If two players have the same high card then the second highest card breaks the tie. Three of a kind is made up of three cards of the same rank and two matching cards of another rank. A flush is any five cards of consecutive rank from more than one suit.