Poker is a card game in which the object is to win money from the other players by betting and raising your bets when you have a strong hand. The game is played with a minimum of two players and up to 14 or more in some cases. The cards are dealt face down, and each player places a bet into the pot. The winner is the player with the highest-ranking hand, or the highest number of chips in the pot.

In most forms of the game, a player can choose whether to open betting on his or her hand by saying “open” or “raise.” This indicates you want to place an amount equal to the last person’s bet into the pot. If you raise, other players must say “call” to match your new bet or else fold their cards.

The turn to deal and the turn to bet always pass clockwise from player to player. The first player to the dealer’s left may also cut the deck.

A good poker player can identify the aggressive players from those who are more conservative, and will be able to read their actions. A conservative player will usually fold a strong hand early in the betting phase of the game, while an aggressive player will be more likely to stay in the hand even when they have weak cards. This is a crucial aspect of the game and will help you to maximize your win rate against weak players.