Know The Internet To Know Your Game

Massively Multiplayer Online (MMO) games have swept the entertainment industry and have carved an entire culture out of the Internet. Friends new and old come together to tackle amazing challenges and forge real memories with a digital world, but there are times when the experience is less epic than planned. Slow or inconsistent Internet and computer performance issues can render the greatest online games useless, so take the time to understand what could be affecting your gameplay and how to solve the problem. 

Understanding Internet Speeds

Internet speed is usually easy to gauge when it comes to loading web pages or downloading files. With file downloading, you'll have some sort of timer that shows how long the download will take, how big the file is and how many kilobytes or megabytes are being downloaded per second. Alongside kilobytes, on the download, you may recall that your Internet connection is measured in kilobits or megabits.

This is a somewhat confusing and often ignored issue that mixes up newcomers to Internet technology. When speaking of bits, you're talking about the speed of a connection, just as miles/kilometers per hour (mph/kmp or km/h) is used for car speed. When speaking of bytes, you're talking about a capacity or the actual downloaded file. A good way to think of bytes is by comparing it to a physical product, such as pounds or kilograms of vegetables.

The terms are often mixed up by everyone from novice Internet users to experienced technicians using quick explanations. The best advice is not to worry about the mistake; being given the wrong unit isn't any form of dishonesty unless someone tells you that a file will download hundreds of times faster than it actually does.

What Defines Slow Internet In Gaming?

The problem with online gaming and Internet speeds is that there's no meter for how many files are being downloaded and uploaded. Playing an online game means that you're constantly downloading information about what's going on in the game world as well as sending your actions to the server, which means both your download (from the game to you) and upload (from you to the game) must be good enough.

Many gaming companies will give you a minimum as well as recommended Internet speed, along with other recommended statistics (stats) for your computer. Keep in mind that the minimum speed is what you need to play the game only; as soon as you start browsing the web or if someone else on the network starts a download, your game may slow down and suffer from terrible lag issues

With lag, your character may run in place, fail to cast spells or your character may suddenly die after the connection finally downloads the dangerous fireball data that you could have escaped. To avoid poor computer performance during gaming, you'll want to at least double your minimum speed--which is usually what the recommended speed represents.

The habits of you and others using your Internet connection can change that requirement, so you'll need to pick out a speed that can keep everyone happy. Instead of measuring the speeds of everyone's videos, downloads and browsing habits, contact an Internet Service Provider (ISP) representative (such as one from to review your network and to match your usage with the right Internet service plan. 

The definition of fast Internet service is relative to the activities you have going on with the network, and modern gaming demands multitasking, so allow the ISP representative to thoroughly interview you and anyone else that usually uses your connection.