Poker is an American gambling game played with five cards. Usually, the player with the best hand wins the pot. The winnings are divided equally.

Unlike blackjack, the outcome of poker is based on chance, rather than skill. Some variant games use multiple decks or even wild cards.

Depending on the rules, players can either discard all their cards, or keep them. Some games allow them to take a new set of cards from the top of the deck. Aside from the possibility of winning, this gives the players a chance to improve their hands.

There are hundreds of variations of the game. For example, there are community card poker games, which use a single deck of cards, and split pot games. Generally, the number of players playing poker is around six or eight. In Texas Hold’em, the ideal number is a bit smaller.

Among the many different variations of the game, the most popular is stud poker. Stud poker is played with seven cards instead of five. This version of the game has two extra cards in the pack for each player, but there is no need for a betting round between each card.

Another variation is the three-card brag. The game gained popularity during the American Revolution. It is still popular in the U.K. Today, it is usually played with two decks of cards.

A third variation, the straight, was introduced during the American Civil War. A straight is a three-card poker hand consisting of a pair of kings or better and an ace.