In poker players compete to make the highest hand from the cards in their own hands and the community cards on the table. The player with the highest hand wins the pot (the total of all bets made).

The game has many variants but there are some basic rules that all games share. The game is played with a standard pack of 52 cards, with the exception of wild cards or jokers which may be used as described in the specific game.

A poker hand consists of five cards, with the highest card always winning. The cards in a poker hand rank from high to low: Ace, King, Queen, Jack, 10, 9, 8, 7. There are four suits: spades, hearts, diamonds and clubs; no suit is higher than another.

Each player must put up a small amount of money, known as the ante, before being dealt two cards. Once the antes are in place, the betting begins. Players place their bets into a pot in the middle of the table, called the pot. When the betting comes around to you, you can raise your bet if you have a good hand.

One of the most common mistakes new players make is to not be aggressive enough with their draws. This can lead to them folding when they should be raising, or it could mean they never hit their draw by the river. A good strategy is to bet more on your draws, this will usually lead to you winning your hand or making it at least.