Virtual Private Networks, or VPNs, are software that allow you to securely and privately connect to any remote network location, including the ones run by your favorite console manufacturer. Many VPNs are specifically designed for gaming, allowing you to stay connected while playing your favorite games on your favorite platforms.
Which one is best suited for gaming? We take a look at the top-rated VPNs and recommend a few based on gaming performance and usability.
Private Internet Access
Private Internet Access is an extremely well-known VPN provider, with over 600,000 active customers worldwide. Founded in 2005, the company launched its VPN service in December 2007 and became widely available for download in early 2008. Today, over 20 million people use the service on a monthly basis.
The company’s popularity is probably due to the fact that it offers a free, no-logs VPN service. Even though this service is free, it is advisable to purchase a premium account for better performance and availability. The free VPN service is limited to 10 GB per day, with premium users getting 100 GB per day. Additional features that come with a Private Internet Access account include a kill switch for added security, a DNS leak protection, a dedicated IP, and advanced security options like RSA-based authentication and OpenVPN support.
Based in the British Virgin Islands, Express VPN is another popular choice amongst gamers. The service allows users to secure their personal devices and online accounts with up to 256-bit encryption, all while enjoying high performance and a reliable connection. (Think of it as a combination of PIA and NordVPN.)
Express VPN is one of the most flexible and feature-rich VPNs around, offering everything from a free version to fully featured premium accounts. The company’s flagship product is the VPN for Business, which provides multi-platform support (Windows, macOS, and Linux), perfect for companies that want to establish VPN connectivity throughout their entire organization. (See our in-depth review of Express VPN.)
If you’re looking for a simple, easy-to-use VPN that supports multiple platforms and has a decent amount of available servers, then NordVPN is the one for you. The service boasts some of the best prices on the market, boasting highly-competitive pricing and bonuses that give you more for your money. (Check out our review of NordVPN for more information.)
To get started, simply visit https://nordvpn.com/ and enter your email address to receive a login link to the service. Once you have logged in, click on the link and you’ll be taken to the VPN’s home page, where you can download and install the app. (You can also use the Google Play or App Store to download the app directly from NordVPN.)
Once installed, you can log in and create your free account, which will then give you access to the VPN’s extensive server network across the globe.
LogMeIn Hamachi VPN
LogMeIn Hamachi VPN, which is a product of the cybersecurity company LogMeIn, is designed to be extremely easy to use and allows for perfect security while gaming. Even though it was first designed for use with computers, the software has since evolved to support mobile and gaming devices. (Take a look at our in-depth review of LogMeIn Hamachi VPN for more information on this product.)
What makes this VPN special is that it can be installed and configured on multiple devices simultaneously. This means you can set up a centralized VPN network that allows for quick and easy connection to any compatible device. (Think of the perks of being able to connect to all your devices with a simple click – no more trying to remember logins or worry about devices being connected and configured at the same time.)
One of the best things about LogMeIn Hamachi VPN is its built-in auto-configuration. Simply install the app on a device and it will retrieve and configure the VPN’s settings for you. (You can also visit the app’s Settings page and change them yourself if needed.) The service supports TCP, UDP, and ICMP protocols, has a strict no-logging policy, and offers over 150 servers in 30 different countries. (See our review of LogMeIn Hamachi VPN for additional server information.)
If you want a one-stop shop for all of your VPN needs, then you could look at CyberGhost, a combination of NordVPN and Private Internet Access that was founded in 2010. (You can also use this link to download the app from the Google Play Store or App Store.)
Just like with NordVPN, CyberGhost allows for multi-platform support (via its Killswitch feature), perfect for gamers who use multiple devices. (Take a look at our review of CyberGhost VPN for more information.)
The app is available for Android, iOS, and Windows, with an attractive price-tag of $2.75 per month, or $6.45 per month for the full version. (You can also get it from their official website.) You’ll find over 300 servers in 60 different locations around the world, making it one of the largest VPNs in terms of server count. (See our review of CyberGhost VPN for additional server information.)
The biggest selling point of CyberGhost VPN, however, has to be its customer support. The company’s staff are available via email 24/7 and, according to our research, the average response time is just a few minutes. You’ll also find that their knowledgebase is quite extensive, with lots of tutorials, articles, and FAQs.
PIA, or Private Internet Access as it’s commonly known, is another popular choice amongst gamers. The company was originally founded in the British Virgin Islands in 1994 and launched its VPN service in December 2007. (Think of PIA as Private Internet Access with a conscience – they don’t log or sell user information and they don’t take corporate funding either.)
PIA offers a free version of its VPN service with limited features but it’s strongly recommended that you purchase a premium account for better performance and more features. The company’s flagship product is the PIA VPN for Business, which provides multi-platform support (Windows, macOS, and Linux) as well as a dedicated IP (which you can use to access banned content) and advanced security options (RSA-based authentication and OpenVPN support). (See our in-depth review of PIA VPN for more information.)
Private Cloud VPS
If you’re looking for a VPN that offers complete control and flexibility over your Internet connection, then you might want to check out Private Cloud VPS. (Think of it as the ultimate combination of PIA and NordVPN – Private Cloud VPS offers all the perks of the two mentioned services, as well as more.)
The product was designed by Private Internet Access founder Jeffery Hicks and it was launched in 2013. Even though the service was designed with virtual private servers in mind, it also functions as a regular VPN, allowing for easy setup and use on a desktop computer, mobile device, or tablet. (Take a look at our review of Private Cloud VPS for more information.)
One of the coolest things about Private Cloud VPS is the ability to launch a server in just a few minutes. Simply type in the IP address of your computer (or mobile device), login to the VPN, and you’ll be connected to a remote server located in a data center or hosting company. (You can choose from three different operating systems – Windows, macOS, and Linux – and the included VPN client will handle the rest.)
Another great feature of Private Cloud VPS is the customer support available via email. In our testing, we found that the average response time to be around 10 minutes, with some answers requiring a little bit of research. (See our review of Private Cloud VPS for more information.)
Proton VPN, like CyberGhost VPN, is a combination of two leading VPN services, NordVPN and Private Internet Access. (You can also use this link to download the app from the Google Play Store. Or, visit their official website to download the app directly.)
Proton VPN is ideal for users who want a single app that does it all. Even though it has a combination of features from both NordVPN and Private Internet Access, it is most commonly used as a regular VPN and only supports a few games (such as Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, PUBG, and more) via its Game Enhancement feature. (See our review of Proton VPN for more information.)