You pull the trigger for the match-winning shot, and — nothing happens because your network lag just led to a frustrating defeat. Even the fastest internet connection can’t save you when your router isn’t optimized for gaming. Fortunately, the best router settings for gaming are easy to implement, so you can get back to your game before your crew even knows what happened.
Is Faster Internet Better for Gaming?Click To Add Text
Faster download speeds and upload speeds are important for gaming, but they aren’t enough. The limiting factor is often latency: the amount of time it takes for a signal to make it from your computer to the server and back. When you fire your virtual gun, latency determines how quickly you find out whether your shot hit its target. Optimizing your router for gaming requires focusing on latency as much as bandwidth.
Ethernet vs Wi-Fi for Gaming
Wired internet connections, especially gigabit ethernet, offer faster speeds and lower latency than Wi-Fi and none of the signal interference issues. The downside, though, is that you need to be near your router or willing to run a long cable.
The Best Router Settings for Gaming on Wi-Fi
When you can’t use ethernet, choosing the right router settings for Wi-Fi is critical to a smooth gaming experience. You can find all of these settings by logging into your router using your internet browser and the IP address printed on your router.
Should I Enable UPnP for Gaming?
Online games can use a lot of ports, so setting up port forwarding can be time-consuming. Universal Plug and Play (UPnP) solves this problem by automatically forwarding ports as they are needed. However, in doing so it creates a potential internet security risk, allowing malware into your network. You may be better off setting up the ports yourself, recognizing that UPnP will always be there if your manual efforts just aren’t working.
Get Back in the Game
With your new router settings in place, it’s time to get back to the game that brought you here in the first place. Life’s too short to spend your whole day optimizing router Wi-Fi settings.