Poker is a card game that is played with a deck of cards. The cards in the deck are usually shuffled before each game.

There are many different variants of poker. Each one has its own rules. Some poker games are played with a single deck of cards, others use two or more decks.

The basic game consists of a series of deals and betting intervals, followed by a showdown. In each deal, one or more cards are dealt facedown and one is dealt faceup to each active player.

After each deal, the dealer interrupts the game for a betting interval. The active players then have the option to “call,” make the minimum bet, or raise.

A player can also fold, which means he is not playing the hand and will not see his cards. When all but one player folds, the remaining player collects the pot without being required to reveal his hand.

To win a hand, a player must have a better hand than his opponents. Generally, a hand is better when the odds of drawing to a higher hand are greater than the odds of being dealt a lower hand.

In addition, a hand can be improved by hitting the flop, turn or river. This is called a backdoor flush.

Most poker games involve a small amount of money, called the ante. This is put into the pot before each round of betting. The ante can be a low bet, like $1, or a high bet, like $5.