Can a VPN Lower Ping When Gaming? (Yes, and Here’s How)
In today’s fast-paced online multiplayer games, every millisecond makes a crucial difference between success and failure. If you have a slow connection, you’ll experience in-game delays. In return, your online opponents will always have the upper hand simply because they have that slight network speed advantage.
As a tool used to improve your connection’s safety and privacy, a VPN is generally regarded as something that will always slow down your network when you turn it on. But is this always the case? Or can you use a VPN to lower ping and get a smoother gaming experience? Read this page and learn all of the details.
What is Ping and What Causes it to Skyrocket?
Ping is a simple measurement that shows how much time it takes for the data sent from your IP address to the online address you’re assessing and get back to you. A ping time between 50ms and 150ms is considered average.
Everything under 50ms is considered above average, while ping times of upwards 200ms are considered borderline unplayable. Now, to the other part of the question, many reasons can cause your ping times to increase. The most common ones include:
- ISP Practices – If you’re with a poor ISP (Internet Service Provider), you might experience high ping times because the service itself is throttling your bandwidth. This is an infuriating practice some ISPs resort to cut costs on maintenance or allow more users to use their network simultaneously.
- Geographic Location – Many online gamers aren’t aware of this, but your geographic location plays a massive role in how fast your in-game network speed will be. In other words, you should always connect to a game’s servers that are closest to you. For example, if you’re connecting to an Asian or US server from Europe, you’ll always get higher ping times than if you’re using the game’s European servers.
- Game Issues – Sometimes, you don’t have any problems with the first two factors, only to experience issues with the game’s servers. This can happen if the game is experiencing high traffic and the servers are overloaded.
Can a VPN Lower Ping and Speed Up Your Connection?
The short answer – Yes, a VPN can lower your ping and help your network connection perform better. The longer answer, a VPN can reduce your ping by sending data packets through a more direct route than they would take through your regular network connection. However, for this to be true, you need to make sure of the following things:
- Use a Fast and Low Latency VPN – The most important thing to pay attention to is to pick a high-speed VPN. Moreover, the service should offer a solid server network so that you never have to encounter server overloads and speed dropdowns.
- Optimize In-App Features – VPN apps are very customizable. They allow you to tailor protocols, different connection settings, and various other options. Take advantage of this by choosing the fastest VPN protocol and adjusting settings for speed over security.
- Choose a Suitable Server – The closer the VPN server is to your actual physical location, the less time it will take the data to travel. For lowering ping and lag in gaming, it’s crucial to always connect to a nearby server.
Not only can a VPN lower ping, but it can also come in very handy if you experience temporary server outages of your game’s servers. With a VPN, you can conveniently switch your IP address to a nearby location and access different gaming servers.
Summing it Up
High ping times can come from a handful of issues and undoubtedly are very frustrating if you’re trying to play online games. But, as we’ve discussed on this page, you aren’t entirely powerless if this happens to you, as there are things you can do to improve your ping when gaming.
To do so, you need to sign up with a fast VPN that has a well spread out server network. At ZoogVPN, we offer you fast speeds and premium performance at very affordable monthly subscription plans. You can even try out our 10GB free monthly plan to see how efficient the ping reduction is in your particular case. Sign up with ZoogVPN and reduce your ping when playing your favorite online games.