Poker is a card game in which players place bets based on the strength of their hands. It’s often considered a game of chance, but when betting enters the picture, poker becomes a complex game of strategy and psychology.

The goal is to create a hand of cards that has more value than other players’ hands. The highest ranked hand wins the pot, which is all of the money bet during that hand.

Each player antes an amount (typically a nickel) to be dealt cards. Then, players can raise the bets in the center of the table or fold.

Typically the player to the immediate left of the button posts a small blind and the person to their right posts a big blind. These bets force players to enter the hand and keep them from folding preflop. This is called “posting” and helps make the game fair and fun.

The dealer changes after each hand, but the position to their left, known as the button, always moves clockwise. The button is used to identify who deals the next hand and where the action should begin each time.

There are a few basic rules that everyone should know before playing poker. These include: