5 Best VPNs for Gaming: Protect Yourself From DDoS Attacks

image credit: Alena Darmel @Pexels

When you’re playing a game online, you have to send and receive lots of data over the network. This means that your IP address and other identifying details are visible to other players and servers. If someone with nefarious intentions wants to target you specifically, they can initiate a DDoS attack on your system through the same network as the game. Don’t think that only computers are targeted! Popular game consoles like the PS5 and Xbox are also under attack. Imagine yourself in a situation where you are into your game pretty much or battling a rival team in a tournament. They launch a DDoS attack to overload your gaming server. Your connection lags and the game is ruined. Fret not! I have a solution to offer.

The formula for building iron-clad protection around your online presence is simple: Use a VPN! A VPN helps protect your privacy and security while gaming by encrypting all of your data and hiding your true identity from attackers. In this article, I’ll talk about the 5 best VPNs for gaming. Read on to learn more!

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What is a DDoS Attack?

Before I start talking about the best VPNs for gaming, I’d like to explain what a DDoS attack is and the issues that it can create. A distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack may sound harmless, but it can be extremely dangerous for gamers. A DDoS attack occurs when a malicious individual or group floods the network with false traffic to the point where it cannot function properly. This means that legitimate users cannot send or receive data from the network because it’s completely flooded with fake traffic.

best vpns for gaming
As you see here, one computer is attacked by many others to overwhelm the system. Everaldo Coelho and YellowIcon, LGPL, via Wikimedia Commons

If someone targets you with a DDoS attack, they may use a botnet-like network made of compromised machines to send a massive amount of false traffic toward your system. This will make your system freeze up, crash, or become completely inaccessible. A DDoS attack can disrupt gaming services and networks, as well as websites and servers. Depending on the size of the attack and how powerful the malicious network is, it can also slow down or crash the internet as a whole. So, how can we avoid the drawbacks of a DDoS attack?

Why You Need a VPN for Gaming

If you want a smooth gaming experience, it’s important to protect yourself with a VPN while gaming online. When you connect to gaming servers without a VPN, someone can easily identify your IP address. This lets them know that you’re playing on the network, and it also lets them track your location down to the city you’re in. A game server can also track your IP address and know your true identity, allowing them to take disciplinary actions against you. Some gaming servers will ban you or kick you out, while others will simply record your IP address and use it to track you down. This can lead to harassment and other issues, so you’ll want to use a VPN to avoid these problems. A VPN will encrypt your data and hide your IP address, keeping you safe while gaming online.

Using one of the best VPNs for Gaming comes with additional benefits as well. For instance, your internet service provider (ISP) might throttle your connection during busy hours which sure affects your online gaming. You can avoid this by using a VPN app like iTopVPN. A premium VPN service enables you to connect to a VPN server which is positioned between you and the app/website that you use. The VPN server encrypts your internet connection. This way neither your ISP can track your online activities nor the websites/apps can reveal your identity. This total privacy doesn’t come with a bank-breaking price tag. You can purchase an iTopVPN subscription for as low as $1.66/month. I’ll talk about the best VPNs for gaming including iTopVPN in a bit. Stay tuned!

5 Best VPNs for Gaming

Now that we’ve settled the issue of why you should use VPN while gaming online, we can talk about the best VPNs for gaming. There are plenty of decent VPN services out there. But some of them are simply better for gaming. For example, iTopVPN is a great one for gaming as it has special VPN servers for gaming. You can have seamless gaming experience while playing such games as PUBG, League of Legends, World of Warcraft, Country Strike, and Call of Duty Mobile. iTopVPN utilizes a strong encryption technology to keep your connection secure while keeping your gaming smooth with fast-speed servers. Also, it is one of the cheapest premium VPNs. You can get the 36-month subscription for $1.66/month. Check my detailed iTopVPN review to learn more about the prices, features and performance ratings of this low-cost VPN service. Alternatively, you can click here to test it by yourself.

Another popular VPN which is known for offering high-end security for a reasonable price is Surfshark VPN. It has over 3200 servers in 65 locations. It is great for unblocking GEO-restricted streaming libraries of such popular platforms as Netflix, HBO Max, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+, and BBC iPlayer. You can use Surfshark on an unlimited number of devices including your mobile phone, laptop, desktop computer, and smart TV. You can also install Surfshark VPN on your router to use it on all your devices which are connected to the same router. It is also great for gaming as it has high-speed servers in quite many countries. So, you can connect to a server which is close to the main server of the gaming platform that you use. Moreover, it secures your connection with a high-tech AES-256-GCM encryption which protects you against DDoS attacks. While preparing the detailed Surfshark VPN review, I tested the speed performance of this VPN app extensively. I managed to stream live events and watch 4K videos without any significant lag. As I mentioned previously, it comes with a very appealing price tag. You can get the 24-month subscription for as little as $2.49/month. You can check my Surfshark VPN review to learn more about the prices of the subscription plans. Click here to try Surfhsark VPN while gaming online. 

My third candidate for the best VPNs for gaming list is ExpressVPN. It is a high-end VPN service which offers over 5000 servers in 160 cities located in 94 countries. Once you connect to any of these servers, your internet connection will be encrypted with AES 256-bit technology. In other words, nobody can track your online presence. Not even the malicious bots and hackers who strive for ruining your gaming fun. ExpressVPN is a great choice for home users and also professionals. I’d recommend it if you have a big budget to spend on a VPN solution as the subscription plans of ExpressVPN are not really budget-friendly. The cheapest ExpressVPN package is the 12-month plan which costs $6.67/month. Check out my in-depth ExpressVPN review to learn more about the streaming performance and price plans of this high-end VPN service. You can also click here to check out ExpressVPN website to learn more about this comprehensive VPN solution.

NordVPN takes the number four in my list of the best VPNs for gaming against DDoS attacks. The reason I decided to include NordVPN in this list is that it is an all-in-one VPN solution that comes with a reasonable price tag. It offers top-notch security with the AES 256-bit encryption technology. Moreover, it offers built-in ad block and antivirus tools as well. You can connect up to 6 devices to NordVPN simultaneously. It has 5490 servers in 60 locations. Also, I have to mention that I was impressed by the speed during my tests. So, it is definitely a great choice for gaming. You can get the 2-year plan for $3.99/month. However, the monthly plan is way too expensive. If you pay only for a month, it would cost you $11.99. It is a bummer. If you have a budget for it, then go for it. If not, I’ve already listed cheaper alternatives above. Check out the NordVPN review to decide whether this one is the right choice for you. If you’d like to check out the NorVPN website directly, click here.

Last but not least, PrivadoVPN takes the fifth spot on my list of best VPNs for gaming. It is simpler compared to the other VPN services that I mentioned previously. I don’t mean it in terms of security, as it comes with AES 256-bit encryption. However, it has fewer server locations and doesn’t come with an in-built ad blocker and an antivirus tool. Still you can connect to 338 servers in 59 cities which are located in 47 countries. I tried most of these servers myself. During these tests I managed to get quite high download and upload speeds. I can safely say that PrivadoVPN does a great job when it comes to providing high-speed connection. So, all in all, it is a decent choice for gaming. It is also the best free VPN for gaming. You can get 10 GB of free VPN data every month. Of course, the free version has its limits. You can connect to a number of servers in 12 cities. Also, it is natural that they may provide slower connection during busy hours compared to the premium servers. You can always switch to the premium plan. The cheapest plan is the 12-month one which costs $4.99/month. Check out this PrivadoVPN review to learn more about this VPN service. Or click here to try it right away.

A reliable VPN can protect not only your internet connection but also your gaming experience

How to Choose a VPN for Gaming

While choosing a VPN for gaming you need to consider different criteria. First of all, don’t jump on the first opportunity to get. It is important to read the latest VPN reviews to see some alternatives. This way you’ll be able to get a VPN which provides you with a great price/performance value. While reading the VPN reviews, you should pay attention to the speed test results, available VPN protocols and encryption methods. Of course, the number of server locations is also essential for online gamers as the VPN service needs to have servers close to the game server for optimal connection speed.  

When you’re choosing a VPN for gaming, you’ll want to pay special attention to the network speeds and the data cap. The slower the network, the more likely you are to experience lag during gameplay. For instance, if you’re playing an intense FPS game and your connection is significantly slower than normal, you may experience sudden network lag. A data cap is also important, as most gaming servers require a large amount of data. If you don’t have a high-end data plan, you may run into issues if your cap is too low. The network strength, encryption, and server availability are also important factors to keep in mind when choosing a VPN for gaming. The stronger and more reliable the network is, the less lag you will experience while gaming online. The more server availability there is, the more options you’ll have when choosing a server location. The more secure your data is, the less likely it is that someone will track you down.

VPNs with Dedicated Game Streaming Features

Some of the premium VPN services provide special servers for gaming while some others utilize modes for online gaming. iTopVPN has a number of servers only for gaming. Actually, you can even choose a server designed for a specific game. If you are an avid PUBG fan, you can connect to an iTopVPN server which is optimized for seamless PUBG gaming experience. There are a lot more game-specific servers available at iTopVPN. Check iTopVPN for yourself to see whether your favorite game is among the available ones

ExpressVPN doesn’t offer servers specifically designed for gaming. However, it has a special game mode which reduces the ping minimizing lag. You can enjoy a smooth gaming experience while being protected against DDoS attacks. You can also avoid ISP throttling as your internet service provider cannot track your online activities. This is why I consider ExpressVPN among the best VPNs for gaming. Click here to check it for yourself.

So to sum up, a virtual private network is a must-have tool for gamers on all platforms. Whether you’re playing on your PC, console, or smartphone, a VPN will keep your data secure and help you avoid getting kicked out of online games due to poor internet connection. The best VPNs for gaming will have reliable networks and plenty of server availability across the globe, letting you choose a server based on your gaming needs. Depending on the features you’re looking for, you can find a VPN tailor-made for gaming just about anywhere. To make sure you get the best one for your needs, make sure to do your research before buying!

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