Learn to Play Poker: List of Poker Hand Rankings Explained
Written by the MasterClass staff
Last updated: Sep 10, 2021 • 5 min read
From its inception in the early nineteenth century to the cultural force it is today, the game of poker has splintered over time to comprise of several different variants both in tournaments and in online poker—Seven-Card Stud, Omaha Hi-Lo and, most famously, Texas Hold’em poker. While each poker variant typically follows a different set of rules, most have one thing in common: the objective of the poker game is to form the best five-card combination, or hand, possible.
While there are over 2.5 million different five-card hands, there are nine different categories of hands. They are called hand ranks because you can think of them as a hierarchy—in most poker variants, if your set of five cards has the highest ranking cards, you win the pot.