Is Satellite Internet Good for Gaming?

Is Satellite Internet Good for Gaming?

You may want to consider satellite internet if you cannot access land-based internet, but is satellite internet good for gaming? Terrestrial internet, like fiber, DSL, and cable, is typically popular among gamers, but there are different views on its reliability. 

Gaming requires stupid fast internet, and a fast internet can be the difference between crashing your opponents and losing a game due to constant lag. Satellite internet may be widely available, but let’s explore whether gamers can rely on it.

Is Satellite Internet Good for Gaming? (Quick Answer)

The satellite internet is not the best for gaming, but you can use it to play some but not every game. The truth is some games will not perform properly on satellite internet. This is because satellite internet is susceptible to packet loss, data caps, and high latency. Lag is an enemy of serious gamers, which is why they need having reliable and fast internet is essential. Satellite internet will not affect most roleplay games (RPGs) but is not the best for first-person shooters (FPS) such as Overload.

Related post: Is Starlink Good for Gaming?

Why Isn’t Satellite Internet Good for Gaming?

Below are the reasons why gamers prefer terrestrial internet over satellite internet.

1. Latency

Lag will make you want to hit the wall or your computer out of frustration during a highly reactive game, but do not hurt yourself or wreck your property. High latency causes lag which significantly affects your gaming.

In gaming, latency refers to the time the game server takes to recognize the action taken by the player and react appropriately. Low latency is ideal for your gaming and general internet experience. High latency means your move will not be noticed for a while, allowing the opponent with better internet to win.

Satellite internet typically has higher latency than terrestrial internet, that’s why it is not the best for gaming. Here’s a comparison table of latency.

Type of Internet ConnectionAverage Latency
Fiber11 ms to 14 ms
Cable15 ms to 35 ms
DSL25 ms to 43 ms
Satellite594 ms to 624 ms

2. Data Caps

The other reasons people do not consider satellite internet suitable for gaming are its data restrictions and data limits. For instance, while Starlink does not currently have data caps, a 1 TB data limit will kick in starting in December, but that’s quite generous. On the other hand, the data caps of Viasat and HughesNet satellite internet range from 10 to 150 GB.

You may think you will not consume a lot of data but consider the constant patches and updates games need, which take around 100 GB to 200 GB. Most games have weekly updates.

3. Packet Loss

You may have encountered packet loss while gaming or heard other people complain about it. Packet loss happens when data packets do not reach their destination, in this case, the game servers. Its effects can influence your overall gaming experience. These include increasing latency or lag and other noticeable impacts on the device’s performance and visuals.

Packet loss is caused by weak internet signal, excess system noise, human-made or natural interference, and heavily burdened network nodes. It can also happen because of network congestion, security breaches, outdated or old network hardware, or software bugs.

While there isn’t a one-fix-all packet loss solution, there are various methods, including:

  • Wired connections– an ethernet connection is less susceptible to packet loss because it is more stable.
  • Increase your bandwidth- increasing your bandwidth solves the issue if it is the only cause of packet loss.
  • Software and hardware update- outdated software can create pocket loss and slow your network traffic.
  • Inspect the deep packet- this helps streamline your network traffic workflow.
  • Lower opposing obstructions– Bluetooth devices like keyboards, headphones, and Bluetooth speakers create interfering signals. Disconnecting them helps.

Which Games Can You Play with Satellite Internet?

The following games effectively work even with satellite internet:

Role-Playing Games (RPG)-they do not need fast gameplay, so latency isn’t a problem.

Strategy Games- most strategy games do not need fast internet since they are turn-based. However, some are real-time.

Single-player Games- these games often need the internet only for updates.

Which Games Shouldn’t You Play with Satellite Internet?

Here are the games that are not ideal if you use satellite internet.

Multiplayer Online Battle Arena (MOBA)- World of Warcraft and others are played on consoles, laptops/computers, and even tablets and smartphones. They need reliable internet without latency problems.

Sports Games– you need a fast refresh rate when playing sports games since they require urgent and quick decision-making.

First-Person Shooters- satellite internet isn’t ideal for first-person shooter games because of latency and packet loss issues.


Satellite internet services are readily available and offer high-speed internet sufficient for most internet users. However, it is not ideal for avid gamers due to high latencies, packet loss, and data caps. Nonetheless, satellite internet can support some games. The best internet for gaming is stable since fluctuations make gaming impossible.


Krystin is a certified IT specialist who holds numerous IT certifications and has a decade plus experience working in Tech. She is a systems administrator for a Seattle IT firm, and she is a leading voice/advocate for Women in Tech. She has been an on-air guest for various radio stations discussing recent tech releases.

Recent Posts