Poker is a card game that requires players to make decisions under uncertainty. It is often played for high stakes, and the winning player can win both the original pot of bets plus various side-pots that are triggered by other players’ bets.

At the beginning of a hand each player must place an amount of money into the pot (representing chips) before being dealt cards. This is called an ante, blind or bring-in depending on the specific game rules.

After the antes have been placed and the cards dealt, a round of betting starts. During this phase, each player has the option to call, raise or fold. Once the betting is complete, the highest hand wins the pot.

Each player uses the community cards in combination with their two hidden cards to form a poker hand. There are a number of different poker hands, the highest being a Royal Flush, followed by Straight, Four of a Kind and Three of a Kind. Other possible poker hands include Pair, Two of a Kind and High Card.

When writing a scene that involves poker it is important to focus on the characters and their reactions to the cards they are dealt, and the by-play between them. If you spend too much time describing the cards being drawn, checked and revealed, your story will feel lame or gimmicky. Also, remember that Poker is a gambling game and a key element of plot conflict can be found in the fact that there is an element of uncertainty when deciding to call, raise or fold.