Poker is a family of card games in which players bet over which hand has the highest value. These games vary in the number of cards dealt, how cards are shuffled, and the rules of play.

Generally, each player starts the game by purchasing a set of poker chips for the specified amount of money, known as an ante or bet. Once the ante is placed, the dealer shuffles and deals the cards to all the players one at a time.

After each round of betting, all bets are gathered into a central pot that is shared by all players. In addition, a small side pot is created for each player who has not made a bet in the previous round.

The highest possible hand is a royal flush, which includes a 10, Jack, Queen, King, and Ace of the same suit (all clubs, diamonds, hearts, or spades). It can only be tied by any other straight flush.

A full house is a five-card hand consisting of three matching cards of one rank and two matching cards of another rank. A flush is any five-card hand that skips around in rank or sequence but contains cards from the same suit.

In order to win a hand, a player must have the best hand. A poker hand is ranked by its odds (probability). This is why it is important to know what the rank of your hand is, as well as how you can tie and divide the winnings equally.