Best VPN for Online Gaming

Online gaming VPN

Online gaming is massive with so much choice on the types of devices you can play on, such as Nintendo Switch, PC, Xbox, as well as types of games and how you want to play them.

It's exciting times indeed.

Sadly though with all the fun of gaming online comes some of the pitfalls and these can often ruin your game time.

Everything from others jealous of your skills attempting DDOS attacks on your connection to slow internet access and more can dog your gaming experience.

If you're a competitive gamer, then this can have a severe impact and even if you play for fun, it can make what should be a pleasurable experience into one long headache.

The solution lies in using VPN companies (Virtual Private Network).

VPNs for gaming can protect against such threats, offer private internet access, and let you access games and servers that aren't usually available in your region.

But how do you begin to choose the best VPN for gaming with so many options out there and what makes one better for gaming than another?

We aimed to find out so have researched and tested all the leading choices for you.

In this guide we've rounded up the Top 5 VPN choices specifically for online gaming. Want to know which you should be considering? Keep rolling down.

How to choose a gaming VPN

Choosing the best VPN for gaming is much like selecting a VPN for any other purpose, such as private internet access, but there are some specific features to consider.

If you want to get the very best VPNs for gaming to improve your gaming experience then lookout for these:

  • Fast speeds – Internet gaming is all about internet connection speed and latency. The difference a few ms can make in gaming shouldn't be understated. It's often the difference between life and death. Getting that slightly faster connection from your gaming VPN will make you react quicker leaving the noobs behind and you looking like a pro.
  • Selection of servers – Unless you're trying to access overseas games than having a choice of local servers is essential. Generally the closer a VPN server is to you the higher your speeds will be and the less latency introduced into the connection. For this reason, selecting a service with many servers and locations is essential.
  • Range of apps – There are loads of ways to online game these days and it's not just limited to the traditional keyboard+mouse or console combination. Making sure the VPN service offers apps for the most popular devices means you'll be able to keep up your gaming even on the move on devices like phones and tablets as well as the more traditional home systems.
  • Money back guarantees – Speeds for gaming on the web can vary massively depending on your location, quality of internet connection and many other factors. Ensure you sign up for a VPN service that gives you time to test it for your needs and covers you with a money-back guarantee.

5 Top VPNs for Online Gaming

If you're looking for VPNs for gaming then below are the top 5 choices:

  1. ExpressVPN – Top Choice!
  2. NordVPN
  3. VyprVPN
  4. VPN.ac
  5. IPVanish

You can find out more details about how a VPN will affect gaming, as well as about each service offered by each provider in the detailed sections below. Click the names above to go directly to that provider's information.

1. ExpressVPN

ExpressVPN apps on multiple types of devices

Pros
  • Very fast connection speeds
  • Best in class for gaming
  • Works on most devices
  • Built in DDOS protection
  • Easy to set up and use
  • 30-day money back guarantee
Cons
  • Monthly package expensive
  • Only 5 concurrent connections

This year ExpressVPN took our highest award, our Editor's Choice badge for 2021.

There were numerous reasons why this is the best gaming VPN, but one of them is the speed and reliability of their services. Across their massive range of server locations in 94 countries, they offer some of the fastest speeds we've experienced.

A quality service will allow you to get the very best internet speeds when gaming and avoid introducing lag into your connection, in addition to providing you with private internet access.

You'll be able to react faster than with other providers keeping you on the top of your game.

Having servers in so many countries is neat and if you want to unblock games restricted to specific regions, then you'll have no trouble. You can even use it to establish up to five simultaneous connections.

Many new games soft-release in Asia like PUBG Lite in Thailand or others in the Philippines. Or some games are restricted to Asia only which is often the case with Japanese or South Korean games. Using ExpressVPN, you'll be able to unblock them.

ExpressVPN offers unlimited bandwidth, top-notch network performance, the ability to hide your IP address, and enjoy some of the fastest connection speeds that the VPN world has to offer.

It can even protect you from ISP throttling, where your internet provider is purposefully limiting your internet speed.

Even if you don't want to access games from far afield, there's plenty of local servers. So wherever you game from you'll almost always be able to get a local connection.

A handy 30-day money back guarantee comes with this VPN for gaming as standard so you've got loads of time to test the service.

Best VPNs for Online Gaming

30-day money back guarantee

2. NordVPN

NordVPN website

Pros
  • Good connection speeds
  • Easy to use apps
  • Allows 6 concurrent connections
  • Cheap prices
  • Good for beginners
Cons
  • Not the fastest
  • Monthly package expensive

In recent years NordVPN has become the best VPN service for the stability of their connections and their internet speeds.

One feature of this best gaming VPN that stands out is the number of servers available. At a recent count, there are over 5,100 available that this VPN company offers.

While it's a popular service it means you have a massive choice of where to connect and which server, and it also lets you establish 6 simultaneous connections.

If you discover one is too slow or over-utilised, then there's plenty of options to change and connect elsewhere.

NordVPN also offers some of the fastest speeds in the industry and in our recent review we found there to be minimal impact on our regular speeds compared to those when connected to the NordVPN service.

Prices are cheap and there are some outstanding deals if you sign up for their two or three-year plans.

Plus you've got a massive 30-days to change your mind with their money back guarantee. It pays to keep an eye on this service, as there are often deals exclusive to NordVPN.

3. VyprVPN

VyprVPN website

Pros
  • Reliable connections
  • Good connection speeds
  • Very good apps
  • 30-day money back guarantee
Cons
  • Server location expansion stalled

VyprVPN has been one of the most stable and speedy gaming VPN services for years but their logging policy was always a concern. At the end of 2018 this all changed when VyprVPN announced they would no longer be retaining records of your usage.

Retaining no logs is excellent news if you're an online gamer because they offer some of the best speeds we've seen. Their connections are also more reliable than most with no connection drops.

It's achieved by VyprVPN owning their entire network and hardware.

Unlike some other gaming VPN providers that rent cheap VPN servers from third-parties, VyprVPN owns them which gives them a higher degree of control. This results in reliable and fast connections.

Servers are available in over 60 countries and there are more than 70 locations to choose from. So whether you're a Fifa player, a MMORPG gamer or an FPS fan you'll be able to get the best possible speeds while staying protected.

Also, note that, like NordVPN, this service also often offers deals exclusive to its platform, so keep an eye out on what is new.

4. VPN.ac

VPN.ac Website Jan 17

Pros
  • Very fast speeds
  • Excellent support staff
  • Reliable connections
Cons
  • Fewer server locations
  • 7-day money back guarantee

VPN.ac is one of the best security VPN services out there and for gamers, it can make a good choice – however, it's not for everyone.

Speeds on the service are some of the best we've experienced among gaming VPNs, and their servers are massively underutilised which means you're getting more of the resources to yourself. Lag or disconnect issues do not exist here.

However, one word of warning.

While VPN.ac is one the fastest and most reliable VPN services it does have limited server locations. Due to this you'll need to check to see if they've got local servers in your area.

Most of North America and Europe will have no issues and there's even a selection of servers in Asia and Australia. However, outside of those areas, you'll need to check for local connection points otherwise stick with one of the earlier providers.

There's a 7-day money back guarantee available on the service so you can try without risk.

5. IPVanish

IPVanish Deal

Pros
  • Good connection speeds
  • Nice range of servers
  • Reliable connections
Cons
  • Not the fastest
  • Registered in the US

IPVanish rounds up our choices and has been one of our favorite go-to gaming VPN services for many years. With many years in the VPN industry, it's not difficult to see why they're a tried and trusted service.

Speeds on the service are fast and you'll be able to connect and forget about the VPN concentrating on your gaming alone.

VPN servers are available in some 50 countries worldwide, so there's plenty of options for local connection and connecting to those further away locations helping you unblock overseas games or servers.

Set-up is smooth and the apps they offer cover most major devices. We found them to be one of the more accessible services to get to grips with so you can concentrate on your gaming rather than get bogged down fiddling with VPN settings.

There's a 30-day long money back guarantee available on the service which should be enough time to test it and see if it is good enough to be your VPN for gaming.

The biggest plus here, however, is that it also allows unlimited simultaneous connections, which means that you can have unlimited device connections with a single license.

Which VPN should you sign-up for?

With that out of the way, let's go through a short gaming VPN FAQ.

Choosing the best gaming VPN isn't too difficult. Mainly you want to be looking for a fast VPN service with nearby server locations such as ExpressVPN.

However, you may have some more specific needs that not all gamers do.

For example, you may be interested in playing multiplayer games that are restricted to Japan only or you may want to connect to an American server to play with friends.

Regardless of which is it, you will need a VPN subscription to one of the best gaming VPNs, which means good upload speeds, but also the best download speed.

Other than that, you will want a VPN that supports multiple devices, such as Android TV, WiFi router, and also any game console that you may own.

Most of these services are also great for mobile gaming, offering multiple servers, fast upload speeds and connection speeds, the best prices, unlimited connections, online security, and plenty of VPN's servers that you can connect to in order to get instant access to your favorite games.

Below we've listed some of the most common gamer scenarios to help you pick from the five services above.

Overall best gaming VPN

Get ExpressVPN. With servers in over 94 countries and some of the fastest speeds we've seen you really can't go wrong.

Even if it's not the service for you they've got the protection of their lengthy money back guarantee that lasts for 30 days.

Access overseas games or servers

Choose NordVPN or VyprVPN. With servers in some 60+ countries including many in Asia you'll be able to tap into all those beta, pre-release and region restricted games from across the world.

Locations to note for those types of games include Canada, the Philippines, Thailand, Japan and South Korea.

Try risk-free

Sign up for VyprVPN. While most VPN services offer a money back guarantee, VyprVPN is definitely one who honour their 30-day money back guarantee.

Fastest speeds

Try VPN.ac. In our VPN.ac review we found them to be one of the quickest VPN services.

They don't offer masses of locations though so if you're after internet speed but need servers closer to home then ExpressVPN will be the better option.

Minimal fuss

Get NordVPN, their apps are some of the best designed we've seen and you can connect with just one-click. Letting you game without wasting time elsewhere.

Essentially, each VPN is good for someone. Many of them also unblock streaming services, such as BBC iPlayer, Amazon Prime Video, and alike.

Of course, you must first connect to the country where these streaming services are available. So, for BBC iPlayer, for example, you would have to connect to the UK.

Why is a VPN important for Gaming?

With companies and others tracking your every move and online threats on the increase a VPN is an essential security tool these days.

However, VPNs do also serve some useful purposes for online gamers. If you're looking for the best gaming experience, then a VPN for gaming can help in a multitude of situations which we've listed below.

Improve speeds and ping

While it's often thought that VPNs will introduce delays, they can help you in specific circumstances.

Often your internet data travels via one route and if there's an issue then you'll experience slow connections, lag and other in-game issues. A VPN can send your data down a different path, one that doesn't have any bottlenecks or problems along the way.

The result is you would see an improved gaming connection.

Protect you from DDOS attacks

We've all been there, you're top of the table brushing noobs aside when some geeky 12-year old takes a disliking to your kill-streak.

Next thing you know and your connection goes all laggy and you drop from the server.

It's likely your nemesis discovered your home IP address and used a booter service to flood you off the game.

Using a VPN will disguise your real IP Address so no one can find it. Many also have built-in DDOS protection so you can continue gaming without worry.

Unblock overseas games

Some games restrict access to specific regions. Others soft-release or run betas in select countries. Games like PUBG released first in Asia and others like Pokemon Go came late to certain areas.

By using a VPN you can access these games before they're intended for your country allowing you to get a competitive advantage.

Access home servers and services

If you like to game while you travel then you could find yourself blocked from accessing your regular games, servers or services.

Using a VPN allows you to connect to your home country and game as if you were at home in your favourite gaming chair.

How to use a VPN for console gaming?

If you game on a computer or you're a mobile gamer, then the best gaming VPN access is pretty simple. Almost all providers have apps for the most popular devices.

If you're a console gamer, then things get a little more complicated. There are no VPN apps for Xbox, PlayStation or Nintendo consoles.

So for this, you're going to need the best VPN router.

It's a hardware device that takes care of the VPN connection for you. They're  better than using a VPN app because you're protected greater against connection drops.

The downside is they're a lot more expensive and for gaming you'll need to get the pricer models. Cheap VPN routers do exist but the speeds they offer aren't suitable for gaming.

We recommend InvizBox 2.

It's a new dedicated VPN router built from the ground-up. It comes in two editions both the ‘InvizBox 2' and the ‘Pro' edition. If you can stump up the extra cash for the ‘Pro' edition, then it's well worth it for the increased processor and wi-fi range.

The InvizBox 2 Pro connects to your regular home router and takes care of the VPN side of things for you. You can keep it connected to a specific VPN server or change at will.

You can also set-up multiple hotspots connected to different servers or regions which is neat if you play different games that you have different requirements for.

In Summary

Choosing the best VPNs for gaming is difficult these days because there are so many choices and all claim to be the best.

For overall gaming VPNs, our recommendation is to choose ExpressVPN. They've got one of the most expansive server networks and some of the best speeds we've seen.

From a gaming perspective this covers all types of usage scenarios. If you can spare time (away from gaming), then it's worth checking out all five options listed above as you may find a feature of one that you prefer over the others.

We would just advise you not to use a free VPN, as they are so overcrowded and slow that there really is no point trying to use them in combination with any gaming console.

Free VPNs cannot offer fast connection speeds, which are necessary if you use gaming consoles for gaming online in multiplayer games.

They also have far fewer servers than any premium VPN company, and they are not safe enough for gaming devices.

Whatever you do, make sure once you've got a VPN that you remember to connect to it and use it!

 

Get 3-months free! Try our recommended Gaming VPN service.

  • Best VPN for Online Gaming
  • Extensive network of servers
  • 30-day money back guarantee

Author: Christopher Seward

After 25 years of using the internet, Christopher launched one of the very first VPN comparison websites in 2013. An expert in the field his reviews, testing and knowledge have helped thousands of users get the correct VPN for their needs.

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