Whether you are playing poker online or at a real casino, you need to know a few basics to get started. Some of the most important are how to place your bets, how to raise and call, and how to fold. You also need to understand the odds of your hands.

Poker is a betting game that is played with a standard pack of cards. The aim of the game is to form the best possible hand of cards by betting until all other players have folded. The highest hand wins the pot. If two or more people have the same hand, the high card breaks the tie.

Each player is dealt five cards. These cards may be face up, or they can be shuffled. When the dealer is ready, each player’s turn to bet is passed from one player to another.

The dealer then cuts the deck and deals each player’s cards one at a time. The card with the highest value starts the hand. For example, a straight flush begins with the highest card.

Depending on the type of poker you are playing, you may have a number of wild cards in your hand. Some games even have jokers. The joker is considered to be a fifth ace in some games.

In most poker games, the cards are ranked from Ace to King. Some games have special wild cards, which are used in place of any other card. These cards can be any suit.