Have you ever joined a game in LoL only to be greeted with a nice 800+ ping? Not only does it make the game unplayable but your entire team also turn salty and barrage you with abuse. Although it happens to the best of us, wouldn’t it make sense to check if you were laggy BEFORE you joined the rift?
Luckily, checking your ping before you join a game is possible and surprisingly easy to do. Within just a few seconds you can work out how fast or slow your internet is, and if it’s worth avoid LoL for a few hours.
Before we look at the various ways you can test your ping, what exactly is ping and how does it make you lag?
What Is Ping?
For the not so tech savvy, the word ping might sound like a complicated technical term, but it’s really not. The term ping can be defined as: a software utility that is used to test the reachability of a host on an internet protocol (IP) network. Results are displayed in ms (milliseconds).
There’s a good chance that many of you knew that already, but for those of you that didn’t, let’s break it down even more. When you join a game in League of Legends, you have to connect to the Riot servers like every other player. In order to connect to this Server you send data down a connection (your internet service provider) which connects you up to the server. The server then responds with a message and sends it the same way back.
The total journey of this connection from your PC to the server can be measured in milliseconds which can give you an idea of how laggy you are. The higher the number, the more laggy you are, with any number over 100 causing problems.
Pinging a server is a quick and easy way to work out your internet’s response time without having to ever enter the Rift. This simple number can help you determine how laggy you are and if you should bother playing at all.
If the number is very high (over 100) then that means it’s taking 0.1 seconds for the server to send a message back to you. That might not sound like a long time, but in the world of gaming, it’s an eternity! Most players are used to playing with 40 ms ping or less with some players even being blessed with less than 20 ms.
Hopefully, by now, you understand that the lower the ping, the better your gaming experience, but what exactly causes you to lag in the first place?
What Causes Lag?
In game lag can be caused by many different factors but they all have one thing in common: they greatly increase your ping. In turn, this high ping delays the response between your PC and server, which turns your gaming experience into something very frustrating. Your clicks become unresponsive, everything starts to teleport and flash around the game, things start breaking, and you continually die.
Although lag can be caused by many different factors, one of the most common is simultaneous downloading. If you’re playing LoL and trying to download something else at the same time, then this can cause your ping to instantly explode. This is because your internet connection is getting stuffed full of data and bytes and trying to send lots of information to various servers. If your internet line is constantly hogged then it will slow down the communications between the servers and you. This is why lots of people experience high ping and lag in game, usually because they have something downloading in the background such as an update or torrent.
However, it doesn’t have to just be on your computer. If anyone on your network such as your brother, sister, mom, dad or even neighbour is using your internet, then they can also clog up your line. Maybe your sister is watching YouTube in full HD, or your mom is Skyping someone on her webcam, all of these factors add up and cause your ping to increase rapidly.
Now you know what causes the lag you experience in game, how can you check you’re not lagging before you join the rift?
General Ping Test
The first way to check your ping is to connect to a generic server to see how your ping is. The best way to do this is to use a free tool such as SpeedTest.net. This tool will automatically connect to one of its many servers and test your ping. The results will give you a good idea of how stable your connect is. A low score of 50 or less is ideal for playing LoL on, anything higher and you might start to have problems.
If there are any problems with your internet, such as members of your family downloading, then it will be represented by a high ping score. However, sometimes you’ll have a really low ping but still experience lag in game. How come?
Well, sometimes the problem is with a specific server and not your internet in general. This is why we’ve included a second test to test Riots individual servers.
Specific Server Test
The second way to check your ping is to test your connection to the individual Riot servers, this can be done on any PC and only takes a few minutes. The benefit of this compared to the other method is that it will give you the same ping figure you will get in game. If you’re getting a really high number of over 100 then it’s probably best not to play LoL at that moment in time.
The first thing you’ll want to do is to pick which server you want to connect to. Check the list below to choose which server you want to test your ping on.
- NA – ping 184.108.40.206
- EUW – ping 220.127.116.11
- EUNE – ping 18.104.22.168
- OCE – ping 22.214.171.124
- LAN – ping 126.96.36.199
- BR – ping 188.8.131.52
Once you’ve picked the server you want to test, its time to ping the server using your computer. If you’re in windows then open up search “cmd” and open up the command prompt. Once opened type the command “ping ipaddress”, and replace the ipaddress with one from the list above. You will then see a list of numbers starting to appear
The most important bit is where it says time= as this is your ping in ms. A high number (over 100) is not good for LoL and is best to not play altogether. A low score means you should be able to play without any problems which is exactly what you want.
Now you know how to test your ping before you enter the rift, you’ll never fall victim to unexpected lag.
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