Depending on the poker variant, players can choose to deal cards in two ways. They can be dealt face up, or face down. In some games, the cards are shuffled before they are dealt, and in other games, the cards are dealt one at a time.
When players are dealt their initial cards, they can decide whether to bet, check, or fold. If they choose to bet, they place a number of chips in the pot. If they choose to check, they don’t place any chips in the pot.
In some games, a player can ask the dealer to shuffle the deck. This is called tanking. If a player tanks, he will think about his decision before making a bet. He can also opt for a forced bet.
In poker, a hand is formed from five cards. The best hand wins the pot. The pot is the aggregate of all bets that the players made in the entire deal. In case of draw, the pot is split evenly between the remaining players. If there is a tie, the highest unmatched fifth card wins.
A wild card can be used to supplement any other card. A joker is considered the fifth ace in certain special hands. In other hands, the joker counts as the fourth ace.
Poker games are played with any number of players. The ideal number is six to eight. A standard 52-card deck is usually used, though variations exist.