The objective of Poker is to capture the pot – the sum of all bets made by different players during the course of a hand. Players wager in hopes of having the best hand and convincing their opponents to fold. Winning is not the only goal, as money saved can be equally valuable. Knowing when to release a hand is as important as knowing when to bet. The best hand in Poker is a five-card combination of the highest rank.
Players start the game by setting up their cards in order – the front hand is farthest from the dealer, the middle hand is closest to the dealer, and the back hand is the closest to the player. Players then announce whether they’re playing and the royalties (the number of units they will collect). As the players reveal their hands, they receive points. If they’re the winner, they collect the royalty units. The game is played clockwise around the poker table.
The game began around the nineteenth century and spread throughout the US. It was first mentioned in gaming journals in the early 1800s, and most pointed to New Orleans and the Mississippi River as the home of poker. By the late nineteenth century, the dominant version of the game was called Stud Poker. This variant was eventually replaced by Texas Hold’em and Community Poker, which were popular in the 1950s. However, before the American poker boom, the French brought poker to the new world.