Is a 256k Internet connection fast enough to have two computers playing games online?

by on June 23, 2010

Q: I am from South-Africa and I wish to purchase a Wireless internet service.

My local ISP offers 192kbps and 256kbps uncapped with dedicated line at moderate prices. (No scaling or throttle – as they told me)

I wish to run 2 desktop computers, both running Windows 7 with the connection. The catch is that I wish to start doing the “Online Gaming” thing.

Will 256kbps be enough to run 2 computers for online gaming?

Games such as:

Warcraft 3 (DOTA)
World of Warcraft
Counter Strike Source

Or will I have to opt for a faster connection speed?


One Response to “Is a 256k Internet connection fast enough to have two computers playing games online?”
  1.  

    There are two important factors for gaming, Ping and Connection Speed/ Bandwith.

    Ping is the amount of time it takes for a packet of data to get from you to a server. This is very important for games and most so for shooter games like Counter Strike. WoW and Warcraft 3 are much more forgiving with pings.

    In general a faster connection speed will get you a better ping, but this isn’t a guarantee and can depend a lot on how good your ISP’s network infrastructure and how far away the game server is geographically from you. Ping can also be impacted by other traffic on your ISP’s network.

    All that said, there isn’t any way to know for sure until you try. It’s certainly possible that the 256kbps connection will work for you.

    I’d suggest talking with your ISP about what your options are for upgrading service down the road, canceling , etc. See if you can start out with the 256kbps, try it out for a few weeks, then maybe try the faster connection for a few week and see if it makes a worth-while difference. Or maybe try a different ISP after that if you have the choice. You might find that one ISP’s 256kbps connection is much better for gaming than another.

    You can also test out your connections with these sites:

    http://www.pingtest.net/
    http://www.speedtest.net/

    Good Luck!