A gaming VPN can easily bypass geo-blocked online games and IP bans. The best VPN for gaming also protects gamers against throttling by your Internet service provider (ISP) and DDoS attacks on your IP address. Tired of lag when gaming online or suddenly getting kicked from the gaming lobby when you’re just about to progress to the next level?
Using the best VPN for gaming may be the answer. A gaming VPN adds latency to your Internet connection for you to enjoy a flawless gaming experience. We’ve tested many VPNs for gaming on computers, mobile, PlayStation, and Xbox, and below are the best we found.
5 Best Gaming VPNs
What makes a great VPN for gaming? To start with, it must be fast. It’s very annoying investing in something that will just slow down your Internet connection during a firefight. Also, it needs to be secure and reliable. If you’re looking to invest in a VPN for gaming, speed should be a priority, but you don’t have to compromise security. ExpressVPN is one of the best gaming VPNs thanks to its outstanding speeds, powerful privacy features, low ping times, and apps for different devices. This is without a doubt a winning combination.
If you’re planning on playing on different servers or want to unblock geo-restricted games, always ensure your chosen VPN has an extensive network of servers in many countries and multiple locations. Luckily, ExpressVPN performs very well here with servers in 94 countries and 160 locations with a great app for routers. This makes it easy for you to avoid throttling on your Switch, Xbox, PS4, or other devices that you connect to on the Internet.
As mobile gaming increasingly becomes popular globally, it’s essential to choose the best VPN for online gaming that’s compatible with your device’s operating system. Plus, since you want to have fun, it’s also important to ensure the VPN you choose is ideal for accessing different streaming platforms. Without further ado, below is our list of the best VPNs for online gaming:
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VPN for Gamers: Do You Need it?
Every online gamer has experienced one nightmare scenario, when you’re enjoying a great experience then suddenly your connection drops. If such a thing happens, even the most composed online gamer can lose their cool. With all those hours of preparation going down the drain thanks to a connection error, and the progress they had made in a PvP match is all of a sudden in deep jeopardy.
There’s no doubt that a stable Internet connection is critical when gaming online, regardless of the game you choose to play. Nevertheless, Internet service providers often fail, whether due to server or throttling issues that extend beyond their control. This is one of the main reasons why most gamers switch to more stable VPN connections during their gaming sessions.
Whether you game on your smartphone, a gaming console, or PC, the best VPN for gamers will help protect you from security issues, some of which can be very scary. Furthermore, you need a VPN for gamers to play with friends in other jurisdictions and access geo-restricted content. Not to mention that the best VPN for keeps your data and financial details safe while streaming or browsing the Internet.
🥇1. ExpressVPN for Gaming
ExpressVPN Top Features
ExpressVPN at a Glance
ExpressVPN is our number 1 VPN for gaming. Considering that ExpressVPN tops our daily speed tests and has servers worldwide, this VPN is ideal for gaming at even the most competitive level. ExpressVPN is headquartered in the British Virgin Islands, the perfect location for anyone looking for the best VPN for gaming. This is because the British Virgin Islands aren’t part of the Five Eyes, Nine Eyes, or Fourteen Eyes international surveillance alliance, which means the government cannot force the company to share user data.
With a strict no-logging policy, you can rest assured that your personal data is secure. With over 3000 servers in 160 locations, you can quickly access gaming servers in other jurisdictions or make cheap game purchases. Because ExpressVPN is by far one of the fastest VPNs out there, you can enjoy exciting games with no lags. With regards to privacy, this VPN is foolproof, thanks to its zero logs policy. ExpressVPN provides port forwarding, obfuscation, and a kill switch.
- 160 server locations
- Stream, listen and watch content from blocked and censored websites.
- Anonymous browsing
- IP address masking
- Superb 24/7 live chat support
- Apps for iOS, mac, windows, android, game consoles, routers, and Linux
Why we recommend ExpressVPN
ExpressVPN comes with Smart DNS for gaming consoles, a wide range of servers, and above all, incredible speeds. With this incredible VPN, you get to enjoy a flawless gaming experience online.
NordVPN Top Features
NordVPN at a Glance
NordVPN is an excellent VPN for gaming that offers great value for money. NordVPN is an outstanding VPN for gaming mainly because of its robust security features, consistently fast servers, and its capability to unblock geo-blocked content and gaming servers from across the globe.
NordVPN has over 5500 servers in more than 59 countries. This is a perfect setup for connecting to the gaming servers abroad to find matches at different times of the day or if you’re looking to play with people from other countries. NordVPN is headquartered in Panama, a country without mandatory data retention laws, and doesn’t participate in the Fourteen Eyes or Five Eyes alliances. This means they cannot be compelled to share user data with government agencies or third parties.
- Streaming support
- Strict no-logging policy
- Next-generation encryption
- DNS leak protection
- Automatic kill switch
- P2P friendly
- Lightning speed
- Dedicated IP address
Why we recommend NordVPN
NordVPN excels in providing great security without compromising on speed. Moreover, it has an app for many platforms and is compatible with different routers. OpenVPN encryption is employed to the highest standards, making it an excellent choice for those concerned about privacy. NordVPN is an excellent VPN for gaming, with a low ping of about 4ms. Furthermore, its user-friendly android and iOS apps make it one of the best VPNs for mobile gaming.
PureVPN Top Features
PureVPN at a Glance
Are you looking for the best VPN to enhance your gaming experience? Choose PureVPN and enjoy playing on any regional server. PureVPN is a good VPN for gamers that can prevent ISP throttling and improve Internet speed, particularly when playing RPG or MMO games. Based on Hong Kong, PureVPN isn’t part of the international surveillance alliances such as Fourteen Eyes, Nine Eyes, or Five Eyes.
This means it cannot be legally forced to share user data. Also, PureVPN provides state-of-the-art 256-bit encryption technology that secures your connection from hackers and cybercriminals, meaning you can continue gaming without having to worry about someone spying on your session.
- Secure Wi-Fi
- 256-bit encryption
- Port forwarding
- DDoS protection
- Dedicated IP
- VPN kill switch
- IP address masking
- DNS, IPv6 & Web RTC leak protection
- P2P protection
- Ultra-fast speed
Why we recommend PureVPN
With PureVPN, you can easily connect to different locations and enjoy ultra-fast matchmaking times. This will help save time and instantly connect you to games like CS:GO, Fortnite, PUBG, Dota 2, etc. Getting a DDoS attack while playing online can be very annoying. PureVPN DDoS add-on perfectly protects you from sophisticated DDoS attacks because your actual IP address is hidden, so you don’t have to worry about getting flooded while gaming.
IPVanish Top Features
IPVanish at a Glance
IPVanish is an excellent gaming VPN. Because of its extensive network of dedicated servers, IPVanish is ideal for playing on abroad servers. IPVanish is a trustworthy US-based VPN that offers servers in more than 75 countries across the globe. This makes it an excellent VPN for people trying to play foreign game servers or gamers looking to access games that aren’t available where they reside.
With IPVanish, you enjoy the benefits of an extensive network of dedicated servers. This provides outstanding speeds for online gaming and will safeguard your actual IP address against DDoS attacks. IPVanish provides watertight privacy thanks to its obfuscation, OpenVPN encryption, DNS leak protection, and its kill switch. This makes it ideal for secure torrenting, including when you want to download software like games.
- SOCKS5 web proxy
- Zero traffic logs
- 256-bit AES encryption
- Unthrottled speed
- 40,000+ shared IPs
- Easy to use apps
Why we recommend IPVanish
IPVanish is one of the best VPNs for gaming. It provides you privacy during gameplay while delivering ultra-fast speeds. It does this by giving you total control over your IP address. You also get secure access to blocked websites and apps. Unlike the Internet service providers, IPVanish doesn’t throttle your bandwidth, which means you can log for multiple hours without any threats to your current connection speed.
IvacyVPN Top Features
IvacyVPN at a Glance
IvacyVPN has consistently upheld its place as one of the fastest VPNs available. IvacyVPN’s highly advanced infrastructure comprising speedy P2P optimized servers built for stability and speed can be deservingly credited for this unrivalled record. The ultra-speed aspect makes IvacyVPN a top VPN for gaming.
Ivacy takes several measures to make sure of complete safety as you enjoy your favorite games online. Based in Singapore, IvacyVPN will never share your personal data with the government. Singapore isn’t part of fourteen eyes, nine eyes, or five eyes surveillance alliances. Also, IvacyVPN has a genuine no-data logging policy, which means they don’t keep or store user data.
Ivacy VPN employs 256-bit encryption tech to users to make it almost impossible to penetrate their security. So, along with high-end security protocols that encrypt Internet traffic, cybercriminals will never interrupt your gaming session.
- No logs policy
- Public Wi-Fi security
- 256-bit encryption
- Defeat ISP throttling
- Internet freedom
- Smart purpose selection
- Split tunneling
- Dedicated IP address
- Kill switch
- Multiple protocols
- Secure downloading
- DDoS protection
- DNS or IPv6 leak protection
Why we recommend IvacyVPN
It’s important that you perfectly protect all your personal files and data while at the same time making sure you have a stable connection while playing online. Luckily, you can achieve both with IvacyVPN’s powerful gaming solution. This gaming VPN saves you the stress of signing in and then out of each device when gaming online because it allows you to simultaneously connect up to 5 devices.
5 Reasons to Use VPN for Gaming
Whether you’re a seasoned online gamer or you just play occasionally, you should consider using the best VPN for gaming. A VPN provides many benefits and much-needed peace of mind knowing that your personal data is always protected. Essentially, a VPN hides your actual IP address and builds a secure tunnel between your gaming device and the Internet. The VPN for games reroutes your data via its own server through the encrypted tunnel. Anonymity, privacy, and increased security are some good reasons to use a good VPN. Below are more reasons to use VPN for gaming.
Protect Yourself Against Swatting
Although it rarely happens, there are a few cases when some players become agitated and begin stalking other players. If an agitated gamer finds your actual IP address, they could access your social media profile and even track your physical location. Posting geotagged photos on your social media account opens up another attack loophole. It’s for this reason you should always hide your actual IP address using a VPN.
The VPN encrypts all traffic going from and to your device and reroutes it to its server. The intermediary server hides your actual IP address. If another player tries swatting using the IP address, they won’t be able to find your exact location.
Stay Safe on Public Wi-Fi
Playing online games on your phone or laptop while connected to public Wi-Fi makes you very vulnerable. First, the person running the public Wi-Fi network can see all the traffic going through it. Every time you log into the service, they can see your credentials and even eavesdrop. They can even read the messages you send in that game.
Downloading media and viewing websites? They will know exactly what you’re doing. Moreover, other people connected to the same Wi-Fi network can easily eavesdrop on whatever you’re doing. Using the fastest VPN for gaming every time you connect to the public Wi-Fi network protects your data from eavesdroppers and keeps you safe.
Avoid DDoS Attacks
Distributed denial of service or DDoS attack is an attack where an individual sends multiple requests from compromised devices to a single system in order to force it offline. There was a time when DDoS attacks were a reserve for online games and websites.
However, today, DDoS software is available to almost everyone who can perform DDoS attacks against others. This means another gamer you’re playing with, can try to DDoS you. The best gaming VPN allows gamers to bypass these issues with a chosen server. This means you can enjoy a smooth gaming experience online and remain safe.
Play Online From Any Region
Many popular online games have dedicated servers in multiple locations and often utilize geoblocking tech to make sure gamers online connect to servers in their region. This usually happens if the game hasn’t yet been released to players in some parts of the world or when the game is grouped by language.
If you are in the United Kingdom, you connect to servers in the UK. If you live in the United States, you connect to dedicated servers in the United States. This can be a problem if you live in the UK but want to connect to servers in the United States. Since the fastest VPN for gaming masks your actual IP address and gives you a new one from the server you’re planning to connect to, you won’t have any issues gaming in any location.
Forget About Bandwidth Throttling
Most ISPs slow down or throttle bandwidth for different reasons. Some Internet service providers throttle during specific days and times as a way to ease network congestion. Some ISPs throttle if they find specific traffic within the network, especially file sharing, streaming, and gaming. However, you can use a VPN for games to avoid dealing with all this. A VPN encrypts your data, making it difficult for your Internet Service Provider to know what you’re doing. Many VPNs comes with a kill switch that makes it impossible for your ISP to monitor your data.
How to Use Gaming VPNs
Now that you understand why you need a VPNs for gaming let’s look at how you can install the best gaming VPNs on your gaming devices. The process of installing a VPN varies based on the gaming device you’re using. While installing on a smartphone, PC or laptop is pretty easy, some gaming consoles aren’t directly compatible with VPNs.
However, you don’t have to worry about it since we’ve already been through this and will show you the most straightforward way to connect your gaming consoles, including Switch, PlayStation, and Xbox, to your VPN. Read on to find out how to install VPN on your Wi-Fi router, windows PC, and macOS.
Install a VPN on Your Wi-Fi Router
Installing a game VPN on your Wi-Fi router is pretty easy and unblocks new benefits that you might not have expected. The first thing you should do is check whether your router is compatible with the VPN gaming because not all Wi-Fi routers are. You can check the manual that came with the router to find out whether it’s compatible. The specifics for installing a game VPN on a Wi-Fi router may vary between models and brands.
How to Install VPNs for Gaming on Your PC (Windows)
Before you configure your game VPN, ensure you have a compatible Ethernet cable. Next, check whether the PC has a Wi-Fi adapter and Ethernet port and is fully compatible with your gaming console. This is the first step towards installing VPNs for gaming on your PC. Below are the general steps to set up your gaming VPN on your PC.
- Download and install the game VPN on your PC
- Plug in the Ethernet cable on your gaming console and PC
- Go to the control panel – network & sharing center and click on ‘change adaptor settings.
- Right-click on the VPN button and tap Properties
- Click to open the sharing tab and tap on ‘Allow other network users to connect through the computer’s Internet connection.
- Tap on Home Network Connection. Next, click on ‘home internet connection.’
- On the gaming console, find network settings, click on the LAN cable option and connect to your computer’s network.
Keep in mind that these steps might vary based on the model and brand of your gaming console.
Gaming with VPN On macOS – How To Set It Up?
Connecting the VPN through the mac is almost the same as setting it up through your windows PC; only this technique utilizes Mac’s Internet sharing.
- Download and install the preferred VPN
- Plug in your Ethernet cable to the back of your gaming console and mac
- Head to the System Preferences, select sharing, and tap on Internet Sharing
- From the ‘Share Your Connection From,’ choose Wi-Fi.
- Select Ethernet from ‘to computers using’ list
- Check on the left side of the Internet Sharing window to enable Wi-Fi sharing between your gaming console and mac. Check out the green icon that shows a successful connection.
- Click to open the game VPN you downloaded and connect to the server closest to you.
- On your gaming console, choose the network settings, select the LAN cable option and connect to the macs network.
- Choose an option such as “Do Not Use a Proxy Server.
Keep in mind that these steps might vary based on the brand and model of your gaming console. More importantly, gaming with VPN is safe and secure, if you follow these steps.
Can a VPN for Games Increase Your Ping?
A VPN for games can increase your ping, but it might slightly decrease the ping if you’re closer to a VPN server. In essence, you’re using the fastest VPN for gaming to stabilize and secure your connection. Therefore, on your standard connection, you may peak at about 10ms ping, but if you are being throttled or slowed down, that may increase to a level that’s difficult to manage at about 300ms. By utilizing the low latency VPN, you can ensure your ping remains at the usable latency, possibly 20ms or even better if you are used to around 10ms.
Can You Use Gaming VPN Free?
A free game VPN may sound like an impressive option, but there are several reasons why free VPNs aren’t worth it. To start with, most ‘free’ VPNs aren’t necessarily free. Some free VPN providers collect and sell personal information to third parties. These can then make you a target for marketing ads. On the other hand, some gaming VPN free slow down your connection, making it more difficult for you to enjoy online gaming.
However, the free gaming VPN that is genuinely secure and free usually enforce strict bandwidth meters. With some, you only get a maximum of 500MB of data each month. This isn’t enough data to play and enjoy an exciting gaming experience online. It’s for this reason why premium VPN remains your best option. Technically speaking, the best free VPN for gaming doesn’t have any data limits, will never throttle your connection speed, and has a strict no-data logging policy. Most importantly, they use highly advanced encryption tech to keep you secure and safe.
Is Gaming With VPN Illegal?
Yes, gaming with VPN is legal. Basically, there are no restrictions that have been put in place on how people can use VPNs. Many VPN servers provide users with various methods to secure their IP address while browsing the Internet to guarantee they will remain anonymous and safe.
Although gaming on VPN is perfectly legal, any illegal activities undertaken online, even when using a VPN, remain unlawful. For example, although a VPN might hide your IP address and cover your tracks from the Internet service provider, torrenting copyright games while using the gaming VPN service is still illegal.