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In this digital world, online gaming has become a top favorite source of entertainment for millions across the globe. Games do not only kill your boredom, but play a vital role in bringing people closer on both personal and professional levels. People across the globe use gaming platforms for recreational purposes. In fact, there is an array of multiplayer simulation games that connect people from different parts of the world.

Needless to say, online gaming is fascinating enough to have you hooked to your PC, laptops, tablets and smartphones. But, just because you possess exceptional problem-solving skills does not necessarily mean you can win a game. Your internet speed has a huge impact on your ability to win online games.

Gaming with Satellite Internet

To play multiplayer online games, you require a reliable and stable internet connection that can give a steady bandwidth. If you do not have reliable broadband in place, you will not be able to play heavy games.

Urban areas in the U.S. have access to wired networks like Cable, Fiber, and DSL. However, if you are by any chance moving to a suburban community away from the reach of a wireline service, you need to know satellite internet is a worthy choice. Even in comparison to slow DSL speeds that maybe accessible.

In such a situation getting your hands on broadband speeds i.e. 25/3 Mbps as per the current FCC benchmark, automatically becomes a priority. And, this is where satellite internet saves the day for residents in many parts of the U.S. While a new competitor in the form of Fixed Wireless is fast showing up in different suburban and rural markets, places where no such option is available must rely on the satellite internet providers such as the #1 ranking HughesNet.   

But, let’s be honest here. Satellite internet fails to attract even the casual gamers. Hardcore gamers know they’ll have a hard time playing games on a satellite connection. Because they run into issues like latency which is inherent to this type of internet. And restrictive data caps, with the exception of Viasat unlimited plans which come with a rather big price tag.  

Is HughesNet Recommended for Gaming?

Gaming with satellite internet may seem like a poor choice, but with HughesNet Gen5, it is easier to handle different aspects of gaming, and there are some games that you can play online pretty seamlessly. With that said it is not the ideal choice for ‘real-time’ online games that are generally fast paced, and require an internet connection with super-fast speeds to play without lag.  

The Latency Issue

The reason why HughesNet cannot offer a quality gaming experience is the latency which comes inherent with this type of internet. Quite irrespective of the provider. Wired internet types like Fiber, Cable, and DSL depict low latency, not above 100 ms. But satellite internet gets delivered with latency averaging out at over 600 ms. And, the impact of higher latency on your gaming is significant.

There is a half a second delay which gets added to the time it takes for communication to occur between your device and the game server. This delay is caused by the 45,000 mile round trip of each data packet. So you cannot do much about that. Time sensitive applications, which allow fractions-of-a-second for user inputs, can thus not run satisfactorily on satellite internet.

Yet, if you need faster speeds than a slow DSL connection, and you don’t mind the excess latency during causal gaming sessions, HughesNet is a good shot.   

The Data Factor

Another limiting factor is capped data common to satellite internet plans, with some pricier exceptions in the market. HughesNet Gen5 speeds are sufficient for many features of platforms such as the Xbox Live and the PlayStation Network. You can download games and game updates, and use streaming video and music services offered by your gaming system. But all of this is likely to require a healthy data allowance.

HughesNet plans have the same download/upload speed for across the board. What makes each different is the data allowance offered. You get to opt from 10, 20, 30 and 50 GB plans. And this is where the problem precipitates. Neither the speed nor the data restrictions allow you to play real-time multi-player games on your Xbox or PlayStation.   

With that said, if you are not into all that hardcore gaming, the HughesNet Bonus Zone Data will save the day for you. HughesNet gives you 50 GB data on top of the monthly allowance, which you can use to schedule downloads etc. during off-peak hours i.e. between 2 am and 8 am. Plus if you run out of the allowance, you still stay connected, without an overage charge, albeit at throttled speeds.

Summing it up, if HughesNet is your only broadband internet choice where you live, and you can survive without an immersive gaming experience, go ahead and check out HughesNet Internet plans. You may as well find the Bonus Zone data cuts the deal for you as a casual gamer.   

How to Reduce Latency with HughesNet Internet

Latency depicts the time it takes for each data packet to travel from your machine to the game server. As we said, when you are connected via satellite internet there is an another factor which adds about half a second to the ping time. The thousands of miles round trip which data packets have to make back and forth. Latency of satellite internet thus makes it difficult to play rapid response games. Here are some tips and tricks to help you beat latency for your causal gaming sessions via HughesNet Internet.  

Reboot the WiFi Satellite Modem

Power cycling resolves “stuff” that maybe preventing optimal performance of a digital device. How often does a simple restart fix “weird” error messages on a PC! So not a bad idea to reboot your WiFi satellite modem, before you set off to enjoy your evening with a game.

All you have to do is unplug the device from power. Allow it to “cool off” for a minute and power it up. Give it the time it needs to reboot. And hopefully you’ll experience a difference in the performance of your HughesNet Gen5 connection during the session.

Close the Programs Running in the Background

It is not a good idea to run multiple online programs in the background at once as it ends up slowing down your online gaming connection significantly. 

You may like to play your favorite music while you game, but it is recommended to close programs like YouTube, Google Chrome, Spotify, and Netflix while playing. When you do so, it does not only free up your internet connection, but make it easier for you to win.

Pause your downloads for a while

Make sure you pause any file downloads when you start gaming. And if there are others connected to the network, it will do you good to request them to pause their downloads too.

Connect to the Nearest Game Server

In many games you can choose the server. Pick the one geographically closest to you. Lesser physical distance between your machine and the game server will get you the fastest connection. 

Place Your Router Close to Your Gaming Console or PC

Whether you use a  gaming console or your computer for your relaxing gaming sessions, you need to make sure these devices are stationed close to the wireless HughesNet satellite modem. This way, you will be able to enjoy a faster internet connection. Still better, use an Ethernet cable to game via a wired connection if you can.

Keep Your Router Updated

HughesNet takes care of the maintenance of the internet equipment it provides you with i.e. the wireless satellite modem. But if you are using your own router to extend the signal from the HughesNet provided WiFi gateway, check if your router is updated. Make sure the firmware is current, and the device is up to date.  

Which Games Can You Play with HughesNet Satellite Internet?

While HughesNet is good to download content, stream video and music, and play Turn-based Strategy games, rapid response games are not a possibility. Games where there is no scope of even a half a second delay in response, are a no-no, but you can play the less demanding ones for sure. Connect your favorite gaming console, Nintendo, Xbox or PlayStation and have a go with these single player and turn-based strategy games:  

  • BattleTech
  • X-Com 2: War of the Chosen
  • Civilization V and VI
  • Gears Tactics
  • Panzer Corps 2
  • Unity of Command 2
  • Battle Brothers
  • Wargroove
  • The Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt
  • The Last of Us 2
  • Horizon Zero Dawn
  • Red Dead Redemption 2
  • Kingdom Hearts 3

The Endnote

There is no denying satellite internet is unable to compete with the performance and wireline services such as Fiber, Cable, and high-speed DSL. And for this reason it is not recommended you rely on satellite internet to play “first-person shooter” or combat games. But you can certainly enjoy Turn-based Strategy games. So, if you are located in a rural or suburban region where satellite internet is the only broadband choice to keep you connected and entertained, the HughesNet Internet service is a wise choice.  

For information specific to your area, speak to HughesNet Customer Service representatives at 1-855-349-9309.

Frequently asked Questions

How fast is HughesNet internet?

HughesNet offers download speeds up to 25 Mbps and upload speeds up to 3 Mbps to its subscribers across the United States.

Does HughesNet have a data cap?
Yes. All HughesNet plans deliver 25/3 Mbps speeds, but each plan comes with a different data allowance. You can get from 10 GB to 50 GB with HughesNet Gen5. To supplement your monthly data allowance HughesNet gives you 50 GB Bonus Zone free data. It gets utilized for all activities during off-peak hours and helps you save on your monthly data allotment.