Ever wondered you’d need a VPN for gaming in your life? How does that sound to you? A VPN is meant to encrypt your data for security which is presumed to affect the internet speed, and that sounds bad to online gamers. But, here’s something you are missing badly. The solution! Being game addicts, we know there are issues like; geo-restrictions, high pings, lag, and latency that can easily spoils our gaming experience. So, what to do? With a gaming VPN; all these problems can be reduced to an extent where this animated world would remain fictional, keeping the real-time goosebumps intact.
5 Best Gaming VPNs to Use in 2019 – Kill The Lag!
A bunch of companies claim to offer VPN services that improve PC gaming experience. But the truth is; not all VPNs are equal, and only a few helps you enjoy flawless gaming experience. Our editors have reviewed dozens of VPNs during this assignment, and below are the top five options:
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Review of Top VPNs That Does Not Affect Gaming Speed
Not all VPN providers offer dedicated services for the gaming community. During our gaming with VPN assignment, we found only a few providers offering dedicated servers that help gamers to reduce lag and latency as well as protect them from DDoS attacks. The rankings came out after a detailed analysis on the VPNs; let’s discuss look at each of them in detail.
1. CyberGhost VPN – Fastest VPN For Gaming
VPN Servers: 4600 | Server Locations: 58 countries | IP Address: N/A | Multi logins: Upto 5
In our quest to find the best VPN for online gaming, we have run various speed and stability tests. While testing CyberGhost VPN, we have observed nominal lags and stable VPN speed while gaming on a normal connection.
Cyberghost VPN has over 4600 VPN servers located in 58 countries, which is quite competitive. The servers are highly optimized to maintain maximum uptime and top-notch speed for all users. Load balancing feature is also implemented on most servers, which keeps the balance and avoid any hassle during peak hours. This makes CyberGhost one of the best choices for online gamers, as they will not face disconnection during the games and the speed remains constant.
You can also install the CyberGhost VPN on Routers. It comes with unlimited bandwidth and speed, so you won’t be facing any lag while playing games online. On top of the gaming VPN perks, CyberGhost is a P2P friendly VPN solution, and it is one of the most anonymous VPN for Torrenting.
Advantages of CyberGhost VPN
- Free VPN to sneak preview
- Robust servers
- Blazing fast connection
- DNS and IP leak protection
- Zero logs policy
Drawbacks of CyberGhost VPN
- Expensive monthly plan
2. ExpressVPN – The Big Fish Among the Gaming VPNs
VPN Servers: 3000 | Server Locations: 94 countries | IP Address: N/A | Multi logins: Upto 3
A Gamer need is speed, without speed gamer is like a dead fish. No gamer wants to play the game with high pings. There’s no fun in that! The good thing is that ExpressVPN’s servers are built for speed, so even if you connect to one of its servers, you shouldn’t feel the drop in speed. ExpressVPN servers are optimized for excellent gaming performance.
A gamer can choose from 3,000+ VPN servers in 160 VPN server locations in 94 countries. ExpressVPN is a top-class service provider that gets our badge of all-rounder VPN service. It is a feature-packed solution that performs well, hence ranked the best VPN for fastest speed on our website.
With ExpressVPN, you can easily switch between different servers that best fits with your Internet connection. You can even request them for a new server if none is working, or you know a server that might enhance your speed and help to lower ping rates. ExpressVPN offers military-grade protection on the web, so no DDoS or any other phishing activity can harm your experience.
The pricing plans are a bit expensive. However, the money that you invest in ExpressVPN is worth-a-penny. There is no free trial available to access the service, but you get a 30-day money-back guarantee which is more of a value.
Advantages of ExpressVPN
- Optimized VPN servers for Gaming
- Native mobile apps
- No server lags and downtime
- Delivers top speed
Drawbacks of ExpressVPN
- No free trial
3. NordVPN – Cheap And Secure VPN for Online Gamers
VPN Servers: 5600+ | Server Locations: 60 countries | IP Address: N/A | Multi logins: 6
NordVPN is another top-performing VPN service that yielded incredible results during our test of best gaming VPN. The Panama-based VPN company has powerful features that not only protect from prying eyes but also help to enjoy true Internet freedom. During the test, we have compared NordVPN with all other VPNs; the speed results were quite impressive. The company has over 5600+ servers worldwide in over 60 countries. To add an extra layer of online privacy, NordVPN introduced Double VPN feature that splits the traffic through different servers, making it difficult for intruders to sneak into.
NordVPN has native software and apps so that gamers can enjoy the speedy experience with ease. Their app for Windows and Mac is ideal for gaming with VPN. Those who love to play games on mobile can also download the native Android and iOS app for an excellent experience with this gaming VPN. Like other top VPNs for gaming, NordVPN is also compatible with Routers, Smart TVs, and consoles so that you can have the same exposure in parallel. You can also use the dedicated IP of NordVPN to enjoy better connectivity and speed. It doesn’t keep any logs of your activity and offers a 30-day money-back guarantee if their VPN didn’t help to achieve your goal.
It is considered as one of the most affordable VPN service if you go with a longer tenure, and we are sure you will be happy to enjoy all the features they have tailored for you. So, if you are asking yourself – “Is NordVPN good for gaming” then the answer is YES.
Advantages of NordVPN
- Fast VPN servers
- Strong encrypted protocols
- Advanced VPN features for privacy
- Native apps on Windows and Mac
Drawbacks of NordVPN
- A bit expensive with monthly plan
- No 24/7 customer support
4. IPVanish VPN – Top Speed VPN For Gaming
VPN Servers: 1300+ | Server Locations: 75+ countries | IP Address: 40,000+ | Multi logins: Upto 5
IPVanish VPN is one of the solid contenders in the race for good VPN for gaming solution. The company has made quite a reputation since they entered the VPN market. IPVanish started with a mission to provide online security; however, later, the company expanded its wings and helped hundreds and thousands of netizens with other VPN needs. That, of course, enabled them to earn respect from the gaming community by providing top-class service to lower ping rates. IPVanish VPN is a versatile service provider that offers excellent features that surely surprise the customers. The company has a wide range of network and infrastructure; it’s own!
IPVanish owns over 1300+ VPN servers deployed in 75+ countries. Talking about the IPs of IPVanish, you get to have over 40,000 IPs that are shared among various servers. There is no cap on bandwidth with an excelled download speed, makes IPVanish an ideal VPN for gamers. While the company offers unlimited server switching, you can easily switch over to different servers to enhance your gaming experience anytime you want. IPVanish VPN is a perfect cure to Thwart throttling, which fuels up the energy of a gamer and let them enjoy the games they love, without any lag.
There is no free trial, but their 7-day money-back guarantee is a good-exchange deal. If you want to enjoy a power-pack experience of a gaming VPN software, then our recommendation is to go with the annual plan, making the service affordable.
Advantages of IPVanish VPN
- Extensive server coverage
- Top download speed
- 24/7 customer support available
- 7-day money back guarantee
Drawbacks of IPVanish VPN
- No free trial
- A bit expensive monthly plan
5. Buffered VPN – Best VPN For Gaming That Kills The Ping
VPN Servers: 1000+ | Server Locations: 40+ countries | IP Address: N/A | Multi logins: 5
Buffered VPN is a reasonable choice if you are looking for a fast and stable VPN connection for your gaming needs. It has VPN servers in over 40 countries with no cap on bandwidth and server switching. Though Buffered VPN has limited features to offer – security, stability, and speed is in the DNA of this VPN. Using the VPN while gaming, we found the performance of Buffered VPN outstanding. During the process, we were questioning how to lower ping in overwatch – and we got the answers after seeing the test results of Buffered VPN. The unique offering of the company is the low latency offered, which was the inclination part of listing Buffered VPN as the recommended VPN for MMORPG players on our list.
If you play games on mobile, then, unfortunately, this is not the recommended VPN for your gaming needs, as the company doesn’t have native mobile apps. You can still use Buffered VPN on yodur mobile devices, easy to configure instructions are available on the Buffered website. It is a bit pricier option compared to other listed choices. Even if you opt for a 12-month plan, you will still get the VPN for $8.25 per month. Its refund policy is also useful; you get a 30-day hassle-free money-back guarantee. Not only is it a good VPN for lan gaming, but our tests further concluded it as a reliable USA VPN service.
Advantages of Buffered VPN
- Good speed and bandwidth
- Low latency
- Multi logins
- Impressive refund policy
- Zero logs policy
Drawbacks of Buffered VPN
- No native mobile apps
What Features A Gaming VPN Should Offer?
To come up with a list of top 5 best gaming VPN service, our experts have tested around 30+ VPN services on various factors. Based on the analysis, a VPN service should offer the following features:
Wide Range of Servers
Number of servers at the diversified location is the heart and soul for any VPN provider. Whether it is for unblocking online games or maintaining the consistency of speed and uptime, server network is the primary key.
Keeping this point in mind, the experts at ReviewsDir have listed only VPN providers having more than 1000+ VPN servers at minimum 50+ different locations.
Security and Encryption
The VPN standard encryption is AES 256 bit, which should be offered by every secure VPN provider. Anything less than that is unacceptable. For the fastest gaming VPN, the combination of protocol and encryption should be maintained efficiently.
After testing 30+ VPN providers, our expert has concluded the list of those VPN providers who maintain complete anonymity of users as well as didn’t compromised on the speed. Encryption is a highly important factor in judging a VPN provider for many reasons like keeping users safe from prying eyes of cybercriminals, copyright infringement agencies, and the government.
Compatibility with Gaming Consoles & VPN Routers
A VPN provider should design the service in a way that it can be used on numerous devices, especially gaming consoles like PS4, Xbox, and Xbox One.
A VPN service should also be supported different routers, so in case a gamer isn’t comfortable of using the VPN on the console, they can easily use the VPN service on the router. All the providers that our experts have added in the list are all supported on a wide range of devices, especially gaming consoles.
Additional Features like Kill Switch and Split Tunneling
Who doesn’t like extra when it comes in a package. Only those VPN services are recommended that offer extensive network of VPN servers, powerful encryption as well as additional features like Kill Switch and Split Tunneling.
Kill Switch is an important feature for gamers. It protects them even if the VPN connection drops. Similarly, Split Tunneling is an essential feature as it works for both dividing the traffic to route through a normal internet connection and secure tunnel created by a VPN if a gamer wishes to route the gaming activities via VPN and run the rest of the activities through normal internet speed.
There may be more than one gamer in the family, so will you buy separate VPN account for each one of them? You surely won’t. This is why it is important to have multi-platform support. The minimum standard is three multi-logins, but many VPN providers go a step ahead and offer more than ten multi-logins with the same account.
How Best VPN for Gaming Works And Why Do You Need It?
It is a fact that people who play video games have a higher level of happiness, and lower stress levels…but just when you think everything is all sunshine and rainbows, there comes the most significant nemesis of every online gamer in the world, and that is THE LAG!
Game lags and High Pings can drive you crazy!
We all know how annoying game lags can be. I have seen people break their rigs due to delays while playing online games. Though there are many factors because of which you may experience lags, the most obvious one is your ‘Internet Connection.’ But, if your internet connection is on point, then the second option is to get a VPN service with the fast speed that doesn’t hinder your online gaming experiences. By using a VPN, you can connect to a closer gaming server from your physical location, to minimize the time of the data packets being sent and received. Moreover, you can also purchase any item, addon or upgrade that’s unavailable in your region with a VPN:
A Best VPN for Gaming Would Be Most Efficient To Do The Following Things:
- Unblocking and accessing games not available in your region
- Evade ISP speed throttling
- Can avail early bird access to any game available in any region
- Reduce the lag by connecting to a server closest to the region of the gaming server
- Get protected from any sort of DDoS attacks
What Is A Good Ping For Online Gaming VPN?
Before you ask anyone about “how to lower your ping” or “how to fix high ping in online gaming”, the real question is, “Do you even know what is the perfect ping for online gaming? You see, some gamers are really paranoid to see the latency and ping that they seek out for help even when they are not facing any kind of visible lag. Some games may start to stutter at 20ms, and some may feel like a lan battle even at 200ms, so it really depends on:
- The rig you have
- The internet connection you have
- The servers you’re playing on
- The distance of server from your own physical location
- Which gaming VPN you are using
So, the fact of the matter is as long as you are not experiencing stutters or major rubberbanding issues, even if you are getting a ping of 150ms – 200ms would be fine too. Generally, anything below 100ms is considered fine.
Benefits of Using a VPN For Gaming
A VPN can certainly increases the performance of online gaming. Below we will discuss some of the real benefits that a Gaming VPN can offer:
Use a VPN to Save Money on Games and Gaming Accessories
A VPN for online games not only lets you play lag-free, but it can also help you in purchasing games at a lower price just by changing your IP. Take this for an example, let’s say that after a month of Fallout 4 release the game has a retail price of $49.99 in the US, but in Russia, its retail price is $39.99. But this is only available to those who have Russian IPs. All you have to do is change your IP to Russian IP via a VPN, and then you can get the best deal.
Bypass Geo-Restrictions And Play Like A Local Gamer
There are times when a certain country bans awesome games due to numerous reasons. For example, China banned Battlefield 4 because it was depicting a US-China War. But did that stop the Chinese gamers from accessing that game? The answer is No. Chinese are no stranger to VPN as most of the social media is blocked in China. They still got access to the game with the help of a VPN.
With a VPN, you can also get access to game demos which are exclusive to a certain region. Let’s say the DOOM multiplayer was initially only available to the gamers in the USA, and unfortunately, you are someone who is living in the UK. All you have to do is get a VPN and get access to that demo. You can also get cheap in-game purchases by changing your IP, but you will have to experiment with regions to find the best deal. Well, there you have it, now you know why you need a VPN in your life. For more tips on reducing lag in online gaming, scroll down.
Use A Gaming VPN To Play Games Prior To Release
Want to be an early bird? By using a VPN for MMORPG games, you can play certain games by downloading them from the countries in which they are being launched earlier. This is another amazing benefit of using a VPN service. For example, if you reside in the USA but want to get your hands early in the game, you can connect to a different time zone, for example, Australia. This would allow you to play the game way earlier than your friends and fellow gamers.
Though it is good to play the game before it is officially released in your country, however, we would like to caution you here that such practice is not recommended. This can lead to a severe penalty, and it violates the terms and conditions of Steam, a digital distribution platform for gamers.
A VPN For Gaming Helps Reducing Latency And Lag
One of the prime reasons why gamers turn to a VPN service is to reduce lags or pings while they are playing games online. A VPN typically helps minimizing the connection distance between your physical location and gaming servers can significantly reduce ping times and the overall lag and high ping. While this is not always the ideal solution to optimize latency, however, changing servers in a VPN connection may stabilize your Internet connection, and result in a better performance.
As VPNs are designed to provide top-notch security, the chances are that the speed of the connection may be compromised. We have seen many cases where connecting to a VPN server resulted in worse performance. In this regard, it is recommended to go with an excellent VPN service only that doesn’t compromise on quality. After all, reliable and speedy VPN is a necessity for gamers, and no compromise can be entertained.
Prevent DDoS and Other Attacks With A VPN
A VPN not only optimizes the connection for optimum speed, but it also secures the connection from any unwanted threats and risks. With eSports and other gaming platforms on the rise, the community of grey-hat gamers is also using malicious techniques to get an edge of the game. One of the unethical methods which were found in MOBA is the use of DDoS attacks which carried out by the losing opponent. You can check DDoS prevention guide which is available on eSports.
And it is not limited to DDoS attacks only. Cyber hackers are always on a hunt to steal information online and use it for their good. All gamers have a profile online, which has their personal and financial information. Without a VPN installed on your console or PC, you are exposed to hackers that can steal all your personal belongings in a blink of an eye. All gaming profiles, Steam account, credit card information, or any other private details can be taken away from you easily. In this case, also, a VPN can be your savior, by preventing all such risks and threats.
Is It Safe to Use a Gaming VPN?
VPN serves for many purposes, where foolproof privacy and security being the essential ones. As the VPN industry is filled with dozens of service provider, this question becomes so valid if a VPN for Gaming is safe to use while playing games online. Or which VPN service to use for Gaming? While DDoS attacks continue to haunt gamers, it is important to choose secure and best VPN for Gaming only. The above-listed Gaming VPNs were tested by our experts, and we can assure that they have the rights protocols in place to protect your privacy. We will further explain DDoS attacks and its prevention with the help of Gaming VPN, so continue reading…
DDOS or Distributed Denial Of Service attacks are most probably the biggest threat to any gamer and a great inconvenience in time when you are at a crucial stage of any game whether it’s a casual match or during professional online gaming tournaments. Last year in August 2016, Blizzard’s Servers were attacked and faced the wrath of a nasty DDOS attack which made a huge uproar among the community because servers of famous games like Overwatch, World Of Warcraft and Hearthstone were affected. At first, everyone was thinking about how to reduce internet lag when the real culprit was the DDoS. Blizzard faced quite a tough time in resolving this issue and also made an official tweet to calm the gaming community:
We are currently monitoring a DDOS attack against network providers which is affecting latency/connections to our games. #BlizzCS
— BlizzardCS (@BlizzardCS) August 13, 2017
How A DDOS Attack Is Made And Your Internet Starts Lagging?
There are a lot of Botnet-for-hire services out there which anyone can purchase for a meager amount of $5 to $10 and target the victim’s IP address to initiate the attack. What happens is that excessive traffic is sent on to a particular web address or IP address to overwhelm its online traffic handling threshold and potentially making it unavailable or paralyzed for few moments or hours.
But Why Attack Gaming Servers?
Online Gaming has now evolved into a multi-billion dollar industry and it attracts gamers, fans and audiences from all over the world, and that’s the reason that most famous format of these online games is known as MMO (Massive Multiplayer Online) in which hundreds of players join in to play on different servers.
As there are hundreds of players playing all the time and gaming servers are always available, they are exposed to the possibility of Single-Point-Of-Failure (SPOF) which attract the DDOS attackers towards these gaming servers to unleash their wrath by DDosing and wreaking havoc on a massive scale so as to gain notoriety and get instantly famous over the internet.
Which is the Best VPN Protocol for Gaming?
Just like every true gamer knows how to overclock their rig to get more “juice” out of the lemon for better performance, same is the deal with a gaming VPN too. Most of the time, the default settings of your VPN for gaming might not just work for you and you have to make some tweaks for that high ping fix. Every gaming VPN service operates on certain internet protocols that define the digital routes, ports, and encryption through which your online traffic will go through. Some major internet protocols are PPTP, L2TP, IPSec, SSH, OpenVPN, SSTP, IKEV2, etc. But we’ll discuss PPTP protocol and SOCKS5 proxy for now as most of the gamers prefer playing with these two (protocols and proxy) by their side to improve internet connection for online gaming and fix ping spikes. You can also check our VPN protocol comparison guide and see how these protocols work apart from the Gaming VPN need.
Is PPTP Gaming VPN Protocol The Answer For A Lag Free Online Gaming?
For those online gamers who don’t know much about VPN protocols, here’s a fact that PPTP is the least secure VPN protocol out there as compared to L2TP, OpenVPN or SSTP because of the minimum encryption it implements on data packets being sent and received. So, here’s a tip; if your internet connection is slow and other VPN protocols are just adding more lag to your online gaming then you might consider going for PPTP protocol as it’s much faster for gaming as compared to other protocols.
Perks Of Using A SOCKS5 Proxy As VPN For Gaming
Using a SOCKS5 Proxy is a great way to access games which are inaccessible in your region, or just not yet released in your part of the world. It cannot encrypt your online data traffic, nor does it provide the supreme security that a gaming VPN can provide, but it is faster than VPNs, hence, it’s more suitable for casual gaming. As discussed before, SOCKS5 Proxy doesn’t come with any security benefits; it’s just used to conceal one’s IP address and cloaking one’s real identity. It will allow you to bypass geo-restrictions and internet filters but it won’t protect you from DDOS attacks or hack attempts during gaming.
If you want a VPN that provides both of these functionalities, then you can check out NordVPN as it’s one of those rare gaming VPN services in the market that currently provides both of these functionalities and have ample servers to choose from. And as they have a no-log policy, you can rest assured that your data can never be abused.
How do I use a VPN for Online Gaming?
The great thing about being a gamer is that you can be in the game anytime you want. Game developers have made it available across all operating systems, hence engaging gamers round the clock. Though a variety of services have VPN for gaming support available, configuration steps may slightly differ. Now all the VPNs come with native apps, making it more convenient for gamers to install and use the VPN and improve their gaming experience. Below we will discuss basic steps to download and install a VPN on your personal computer or mobile devices.
Setting Up Your Selected Gaming VPN on Windows PC
Windows machines are made to cope up with the needs of gamers. Majority of the top-notch games are either available on consoles, or on Windows. Unfortunately, Mac users are left with no support for games. A VPN for gaming service has dedicated apps for the different Windows version; here we will show simple steps to set up your gaming VPN on Windows PC.
- The first step is to ensure that no gaming is running on your PC or any other software like Steam, Battle.net, Origin, etc.
- From our recommended VPN for gaming list, choose one of the services and download it on your PC.
- Depending on your location and type of game you are playing, choose a VPN server close to your original location.
- Gaming VPNs like ExpressVPN and NordVPN allows you to choose fastest VPN protocol from the app. Select one and connect.
- Check advanced option from the app and disable unwanted options to boost up the performance.
Setting Up Your Gaming VPN on Android
- Once you sign up for Gaming VPN service from our recommended options, proceed to download the app from website or app store. All major players have native apps available on the store.
- Open the app and choose a server that is close to your original location.
- Go to protocols and choose PPTP – learn why PPTP protocols work faster than others.
- Open the game you want to play, and enjoy speedy connection with a VPN service.
- To optimize the performance further, make sure that other apps or games are not active as they might consume your bandwidth, hence resulting in slower connection speed.
Setting Up Your VPN For Gaming on iOS
- Before you proceed, make sure that all games are closed on your iOS device.
- Select a Gaming VPN from the options we shared earlier. Each of the VPN has a native iOS app which is very easy to use.
- Sign up for the VPN and download the app on your iOS device.
- Select the country you would like to connect with.
- Go to protocol option and select PPTP as this would give you better speed with no downtime.
- That’s it! You are all set to go into the world of games with fastest and best VPN for Gaming installed on your iOS device.
And The Fastest VPN For Gaming Is…
Lag is unavoidable, but by taking certain measures, you can reduce the lag in your online games. And we all know the fact that the difference in the prices of these VPNs is due to the level of quality and services they provide, but not in every case. So it’s best to do a little research of your own before making the purchase move. The speed of course is the top priority of gamers, stability and security come along with it. All the VPNs that we listed were gone through a detailed process which we mentioned earlier.
From all the best VPN for console gaming that is listed here, we personally enjoyed to use and test ExpressVPN as they exceeded our expectations. However, below are our top three fastest VPNs for gaming that we highly recommend.
We hope this article helped you in resolving your query. We would appreciate if you could let us know what you think about the tips, tricks and hacks mentioned, and surely we can add and extend this article as per your recommendations. But, in short, sign up for the mentioned VPNs for gaming for a smoother and lag-free gaming experience today!