There is nothing more frustrating than gaming with your friends online and then all of a sudden the game begins to lag. Maybe you are seconds away from reaching the next level of that first-person shooter game or scoring the winning goal in your favorite sports game, and your device bugs out. If this has ever happened to you, then you know how frustrating it can be to have your gaming experience interrupted.
One of the reasons this may be happening is that you may be playing with a low-quality ping. Ping is the measure of latency from your device to the server and then back to your device. Essentially, it is a measurement of connection speed that influences lag, which can affect your gaming experience.
If you have been experiencing a lag while gaming, then it may be useful to understand more about ping testing so that you can play with fewer to no disturbances. Explore this guide to learn about the difference between a good and bad ping, as well as ways to improve your ping.
In online games that require quick reactions, you not only need to react quickly using your mouse, keyboard or controller, but you also need your PC or game console to communicate quickly and smoothly with the game’s server. This is where a good ping is vital.
While there is not a universal guide to good ping, as it depends on the game servers and other factors, generally a ping that is over 100 milliseconds (ms) is poor. Most gamers should strive for the lowest ping possible, as this means network devices are able to transfer signals back and forth in less time.
|Ping range||Quality of ping||Effects on gaming experience|
|0 - 20 ms||Great||Lag or glitches during gameplay should be minimal; high-quality visuals|
|20 - 50 ms||Good||Mostly smooth and responsive gaming experience|
|50 - 100 ms||Fair||Most common range for gamers; may experience occasional lag, depending on game and device settings|
|100 - 300 ms||Poor||Likely to experience many lags and delays while gaming|
|300 ms or more||Not playable||Extensive delays in response; a noticeable lag that will create a poor-quality gaming experience|
There are many options for performing a ping test. Luckily, most online games allow players to check their ping directly in the game. Explore the game settings and look for “network options.” Once there, follow the directions to get your ping test results. Another simple way to perform a ping test is by using CenturyLink’s internet speed test, which includes ping in addition to download and upload speeds. You can also check out any of the specialized online ping testing sites, and simply follow the directions on the site.
If you have been experiencing high ping that is interrupting your gameplay, follow these tips and methods to help improve ping: