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How to Play Poker

Poker is a card game that combines both skill and luck in order to win. It is played either as cash games or tournaments. The twin elements of skill and luck allow players to make money over the long term. In order to play the game well, you need to know how to read your opponents and use a variety of tactics. These skills include betting, bluffing, and reading tells, which are unconscious habits a player displays during gameplay that reveal information about their hand.

The goal of the game is to make the best five card poker hand using your own two personal cards and the community cards on the table. If you make a good hand and your opponents fold, then you can win the “pot” (all of the chips bet so far). After the community cards are dealt there is one final round of betting, and the last card is dealt (“river”).

You can bet on your own hands or raise the bets made by other players. To raise a bet, say “raise” and then add more money to the pot. You can also say “call” if you want to match the bet made by the person before you.

If you have a good Poker hand, then you should always bet on it. This will force weaker hands out of the game and raise the value of your hand. You can also bluff if you have a strong hand to try and trick your opponents.