Poker is a card game in which players bet each other with chips that represent money. The rules vary by game, but most involve betting rounds and a showdown where the best hand wins. The game also involves strategy and psychology, reducing the chance of a win purely by luck.

Most games begin with each player putting in an amount of money called the ante (amount varies by game). Then the dealer deals each player a single hand. Betting rounds take place in a clockwise manner and the highest hand wins the pot. Ties can be broken in a number of ways, depending on the rules of the specific game.

During the first few decades of the century, the popularity of poker increased substantially, thanks to the invention of the Internet and televising. By the turn of the millennium, Texas hold’em became the most popular variation of the game.

Official Poker Rules

As poker has become more of a global game there have been efforts to develop a set of consistent, worldwide tournament rules that will avoid many of the disputes that can arise. A group of professional tournament directors known as the Poker Tournament Directors Association, or TDA, has been developing these rules for years.

TDA members are managers of major poker rooms, circuits or poker leagues and they meet every two years to discuss poker rule reforms. The full set of 81 poker rules is available on their website and is freely downloadable.