Basic Rules of Poker – Hand Rankings

Millions of random people play poker everyday, either online or offline. Besides for being the most popular card game, it is certainly the most entertaining as well. What is so special about this game is that it involves playing, risking and acting.

Nevertheless, learning the basic rules of poker can sometimes be hard for some, especially when it comes to learning the hand rankings. But in reality, memorizing the hand rankings is a lot simpler than it seems to be on the first sight.

The most valued hand ranking is the Straight Flush which brings together five successive cards of the same suit. The highest ranked Straight Flush hand is called Royal Flush which contains 10♣, J♣, Q♣, K♣, A♣ (not necessarily of this suit, but they must belong to the same suit). If two or more players have a Straight Flush, the player with the highest ranking cards wins.

The Four Kind hand combines four cards of the same rank but with different suits. In the event of two players having the Four Kind hand, the player with the highest ranking combination wins. If the two players have the same combination, the fifth card (called the kicker) is used to declare the winner.

The Full House is a combination of three cards of the same rank and two other cards of the same rank. For instance, a Full House would be A♠, A♣, A♥, 9♦, 9♦. If tied, the highest matching three card pair wins.

The Flush, which is different from the Straight Flush, consists of five cards belonging to different ranks but that are suit-matched. For instance, K♠, 8♠, 5♠, 3♠, 2♠ is considered a flush. If there is a tie, the player with the highest ranking cards wins.

Another important hand is Straight which is formed by five consecutive cards that do not belong to the same suit. Three of a kind is another hand formed by three ranking-matched cards and two other cards that do not match. On the other hand, Two Pair is formed by two pairs of the same hand ranking and another unrelated card. For instance, 10♣, 10♠, J♥, J♠, 5♦ would be a two pair hand.

Similar to Two Pair, the One Pair hand is formed by one pair and three unrelated cards. An example for this would be 8♣, 8♠, Q♥, 7♣, 5♦. Last (and in our case the least), High Card is a hand formed by five unrelated cards. If two players have the same hand, the player with the highest ranking cards wins the game.

I believe this concludes the hand rankings you should know before playing poker. It might take a little time to get used to these at first but if you keep practicing, over time you will learn them effortlessly.

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