Can you get a better ping with VPN?
Online gaming has come a long way in recent years, going from a relative niche hobby enjoyed by small communities of players to a global phenomenon, beloved by people of all ages. Statistics show that more people than ever are enjoying online gaming, diving into fun, competitive tiles like Fortnite and Overwatch with their friends from across the globe.
And when it comes to online gaming, nobody wants to have a second-rate experience, with laggy connections and interrupted sessions ruining the fun. This is why ping times are such an important aspect of gaming, and the lower the ping, the faster your connection will be, giving you an edge over the competition and helping you play to a higher standard, every time.
Gamers are always looking for ways to improve their ping times, and a virtual private network (VPN) might be the answer. Reports have shown that VPNs can reduce ping times, speeding up your online gaming, reducing the risk of lag, and letting you enjoy stronger and more consistent performance in your favorite titles. Here’s how it all works.
What Exactly Is Ping?
Ping is one of the most important terms for any online gamer to know. It basically tells you how fast your computer (or console) is at sending and receiving data to and from a gaming server. Ping time is measured in ms, and the lower the time, the better your ping.
If you find yourself dealing with a ping of 200ms or more, you may struggle with lag, delayed input, and other issues while trying to game with others online. Meanwhile, if you have a ping of 20ms or lower, you’ll experience lightning-fast connections, like playing with others in the exact same room.
Why Does Ping Matter?
If you talk to hardcore gamers in competitive gaming scenes, you’ll hear the term ‘ping’ being thrown around a lot, and it really is hugely important to your chances of success in any given online game, especially something like a shooting or fighting game, in which every second count and super fast reactions are key to success.
Ping matters because it has a direct impact on how your games play out. If you have low ping, you’ll be able to play comfortably, with speedy inputs and responses, minimal to no lag, and quick connections with other players. In short, a good ping time lets you play games the way they’re supposed to be played, without any unnecessary problems getting in the way.
Meanwhile, playing with a high ping time leads to lag issues, delays in your inputs, more time taken to match up with other players, issues with talking to other players via your microphone, and more. This can be very frustrating, taking away from the fun of the game and making you more likely to lose your matches.
How Can I Improve My Ping?
Many gamers want to improve their ping times and enjoy better gaming experiences with their friends and other players from around the world, and there are a few different ways you can do this.
Firstly, the simplest way is to simply get the best internet you can afford that is available in your area. A faster connection will result in a better ping time, so if you currently have a 10 Mbps connection and have the possibility to upgrade to a 25 Mbps connection, for instance, you should do so.
Another way would be to ensure that during your game sessions, you avoid using the internet on other devices and definitely don’t try to download anything at the same time as you play. This can be tricky in homes with multiple occupants and lots of connected devices, but if you can maximize the amount of bandwidth dedicated to your online gaming, you’ll have a better time.
Another way you can improve your ping while also giving yourself an extra layer of online security and various other advantages too are by making use of a VPN. See below to find out more about how this works.
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How Can A VPN Help?
One of the best ways you can maximize your gaming speeds and minimize your ping time is to ensure that your server and the game’s server are close to each other. For example, let’s say a game server is in San Francisco and you’re trying to connect from a server in London, UK. That’s a pretty big distance.
If you were able to connect via a server-based in North America, instead, you’d get a better ping time, as the data packets from your computer would have a shorter distance to travel between the VPN server and the game server, taking less time overall and therefore resulting in a lower ping.
A VPN actually lets you do this in just a couple of clicks. Most VPN providers have server networks spread out all over the globe, letting you connect to anywhere you like, from Toronto to New York to Paris to Sydney and hundreds of more cities. This way, whenever you play a game, all you need to do is load up your VPN and select a server close to the game server in order to enjoy speedy, reliable connections and reduced ping times.
How Do I Set Up A VPN For Online Gaming?
Setting up a VPN for online gaming is surprisingly simple, as long as you choose the right provider. Many providers, such as ExpressVPN, are able to offer easy tutorials and guides that help you get all set-up for gaming enjoyment. In most cases, all you’ll need to do is install the VPN program, load it up, and then connect to a server of your choice.
Once the connection has been established, all you need to do is load up your favorite game and start to play! You can usually see your ping time in-game, so you can try out different servers and see which one provides the fastest results. It’s also wise to make use of one of the fastest VPN protocols, like OpenVPN or PPTP, in order to enjoy the strongest speeds.
If you’re a console player, the situation can be a little trickier, as you may need to set up the VPN on your router instead or create a VPN-protected Wi-Fi hotspot in your home and then connect your console to that in order to enjoy the benefits of the VPN. Many providers will offer helpful tutorials to guide you through this process.
Read More: Best VPN for Playstation
Other Benefits Of Gaming VPNs
As well as helping to cut down on your ping times, gaming VPNs can provide an array of additional benefits too. They encrypt your connections, helping to protect you against DDoS attacks and other issues, as well as potentially letting you unblock games online and access exclusive content from other countries and regions by connecting to servers in those locations.
Read More: Ultimate Guide to VPN Encryption
Will a VPN lower my ping?
This all depends on which VPN you choose, but it’s absolutely possible to lower your ping with a VPN, yes. As long as you choose a strong, high-powered VPN with a wide server network and speedy servers close to your current location, you should be able to notice better ping, less lag, and stronger gaming performance in general.
What is a good ping for gaming?
In general, you want to keep your ping as low as possible. Most broadband connections offer pings of around 100ms or less, and you definitely want to avoid going into the triple digits if possible. Pings between 50 and 100ms are considered to be good, while anything less than 50 is terrific and a ping of 20ms or less is absolutely exceptional, resulting in the fastest possible performance.
How many Mbps do I need for gaming with a VPN?
When it comes to online gaming, speed matters a great deal, and the stronger your internet connection is, the better. In general, you need a minimum of about 5-10 Mbps for online gaming, but you may experience some lag and weak ping times with this kind of connection. 10-25 Mbps should be perfectly sufficient in most cases, and anything higher is a bonus.
What VPN service should I use for gaming?
When looking for the best VPN for gaming, you need to focus on speed, performance, and server locations, as well as trying to find a VPN that has been catered towards the gaming market. Options like ExpressVPN and Cyber Ghost are among the best gaming VPNs as they can offer huge server networks and super speedy connections to keep your ping time low.
Every online gamer knows the importance of speed, and that’s why it’s so important to take whatever action you can to keep your ping time low and your speeds high. A VPN can absolutely help with that, and as long as you choose the right VPN, you can take your gaming experiences to a whole new level.
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