If you’re writing about poker, you need to know the game well, with its many variants. You also need to keep up with the latest developments in the game and the players. This will enable you to write articles that are interesting, informative and engaging for your readers.

You should also study the various betting patterns of players. A conservative player tends to fold early, while an aggressive player will often raise a hand before seeing how the other players act on it. A good way to identify a player’s style is by their tells, which are expressions of emotion and nervousness that can give away information about their intentions. These tells include shallow breathing, sighing, flaring nostrils, watery eyes and a hand over the mouth to conceal a smile.

Articles about Poker often mention a variety of earlier vying games, but not all have much bearing on the modern game. These include the Primiera (Italian, 16th century), its English equivalent Primero (16th – 17th centuries), Gilet under various spellings (18th century) and Ambigu (19th century).

The earliest known form of Poker was played with a 20-card pack evenly dealt among four players with no draw, and the top hand consisted of a straight or flush. The American Civil War saw further additions to the game, such as the use of a full 52-card pack and the introduction of wild cards. These developments spread to other countries.