Poker is a card game in which players place bets on the outcome of hands. There are many different variations of poker, but all share the same basic rules. Players compete for a single pot of money by betting on the strength of their cards and their knowledge of opponents’ betting patterns. There are some forced bets, but most bets are placed voluntarily by players who believe that their bet has positive expected value or who are trying to bluff other players for various strategic reasons. Thus, while the game does involve some element of chance, a knowledgeable player should always come out ahead in the long run.

A tournament is a competition in which a relatively large number of competitors are concentrated into a small time interval, as in most team and racket sports, combat sports, some board games, and many forms of competitive debating. In addition, a tournament may have a structure which specifies the number of rounds that should be used or the amount of time that the tournament should last for.

Poker is usually played with a fixed number of chips that each player must purchase or “buy in” for before the game begins. Each chip has a specific value, usually based on a standard unit of whites or some other light-colored denomination. A white chip is worth one minimum ante or bet; a red chip is worth five whites. Some games also use blue chips, which are generally worth 10 whites or 25 whites.