Poker is a card game where players compete to make the best hand. A hand is made up of five cards, and the value of the hand is inversely related to its frequency (probability).
A game of Poker begins with one or more forced bets. These may be ante or blind bets (sometimes both). The dealer shuffles and cuts the deck, and then deals the appropriate number of cards to each player, beginning with the player to his left.
After the initial deal, a series of betting rounds is begun, with each round followed by a showdown. The player with the best hand collects the pot at the end of each round.
Bluffing is a key feature of Poker, distinguishing it from other games in which the hands are ranked by their probability. A bluff is a bet or raise that no other player calls, and the bettor wins without showing his hand.
Players self-select into stake levels on the basis of their perception of their skill level. Better players are more likely to play for larger stakes, while worse or beginning players tend to play for smaller ones.
The degree of tightness in a hand is determined by how much money was placed into the pot before the cards were dealt. Tighter play is often thought to be indicative of a higher skill level.