The Ultimate Texas Holdem Poker Guide for Absolute Beginners 

So you’ve decided to try your hand at Texas Holdem poker. Excellent choice! This popular card game is fun and can be quite rewarding if you know what you’re doing.

If you’re new to the game, this guide will teach you everything you need to know to get started. It’ll cover the basic poker rules, and it’ll also give you some tips on how to improve your gameplay. You’ll soon be playing like a pro with effort and some practice.

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Order of poker hands

The first thing you need to know is the hand rankings. In poker, the player with the best hand wins the pot. Here is a list of the different hands from best to worst:

Royal Flush: A, K, Q, J, 10 of the same suit.

Straight Flush: Any five cards in sequential order sharing the same suit.

Four of a Kind: Four cards of identical rank.

Full House: Three cards of the identical rank, plus two more cards of the identical rank (e.g., three 7s and two 2s).

Flush: Any five cards sharing the same suit, but not in sequential order.

Straight: Any five cards in sequential order, but not of the same suit.

Three of a Kind: Three cards of identical rank.

Two Pair: Two sets of two cards of identical rank (e.g., two 9s and two 3s).

One Pair: Two cards of identical rank.

High Card: the highest ranked card in your hand that does not belong to any of the combinations listed above.

If you’re finding it hard to memorize the order of card rankings, it may be best to keep a copy next to you when you play. Now, let’s move on to the rules of the game.

Texas Holdem rules

A game is usually played with anywhere from two to 10 players at a table. The goal is to make the best five-card hand using any combination of your two hole cards and the five community cards in the middle of the table.

The first thing that happens is that everyone at the table is dealt two-hole cards face down. You will have these only cards for the entire hand, so choose them wisely.

After everyone has their hole cards, the first round of betting begins. The player to the dealer’s left (the “button”) starts things off, and the play continues clockwise around the table. At this point, players have a few options: they can either “call” (match the current bet), “raise” (increase the current bet), or “fold” (give up their hand and exit the round).

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Once the betting is complete, three community cards are dealt face-up in the middle of the table. These are known as the “flop.” Another round of betting ensues, starting with the player to the left of the button.

After the flop, a fourth community card (the “turn”) is dealt face-up in the middle of the table. After a fifth and final community card (the “river”) is dealt face-up, one more round of betting follows. At this point, all players still in the hand reveal their hole cards, and the best five-card hand is determined. The player with the best hand wins the pot. 

If you’re still feeling a bit confused, don’t worry. The best way to learn is by actually playing the game. There are plenty of free Texas Holdem online poker games you can try your hand at, so be sure to apply what you learn.

Now for a few pieces of advice to get you started. Poker is a game of perception, calculation, and strategy. It’s a live game with real players trying to outsmart each other. To get on top, you must stay one step ahead of everyone else. Keep these tips in mind the next time you decide to play a few rounds.

Learn when to fold

While this isn’t the most intuitive advice for beginners, not every hand you are dealt is good enough to risk money on. Some statistics and odds describe how well your hand is likely to perform. Your chip stack will be much healthier if you throw away a bad hand before the flop than calling until the river to come up with a high card. Don’t think of folding as surrendering. It’s an important way to save chips to use at a better time.

Study your opponents

As a beginner, you’re still learning the ropes of Texas Holdem poker—and you aren’t playing in a vacuum. The other people around you are all trying to get the upper hand. Some of them have more experience with the game. Watch for any patterns in how they play, and try to play your hands, knowing how they will behave. If you like what you see from some players, try mixing their techniques into your gameplay.

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Apply what you learn through practice

Reading and watching guides, gameplay, and tips can only teach you so much. Hands-on experience is invaluable; what you learn from online resources may resonate more if you experience them firsthand. There are many free poker games, websites, and apps for you, so take advantage of those available and get to playing.

This guide provides all the information you need to get started playing one of the most exciting games out there. A great place to get started is at GGPoker, the world’s largest poker room. So get out there and start your journey towards becoming the next big pro!