How to Reduce Overwatch Lag with a VPN

Overwatch VPNOverwatch is the highly anticipated game made by Blizzard. This game will be an exciting and very competitive online shooter. In this game there will be teams of six  fighting it out for victory. The game will be available on Windows, PS4 and Xbox One. Unlike WoW, Overwatch is free to play after you buy it. With Overwatch being a highly anticipated online game there is a good possibility that you experience lag, slow connections times, and perhaps geo restrictions depending on which region you want to play in. To help fix these problems I would recommend a VPN. A VPN will assign you an IP address based on the server location you choose. Pick a location close to the server you are playing on to reduce ping and help eliminate lag. Since it is not your IP address you can get past geo restrictions and firewalls so you can play at school or at work. Professional gamers will also like the added bonus of DDoS attack protection that a VPN provides.

RankVPN ServiceOur
1ExpressVPN9.8160Visit ExpressVPN
2Private Internet Access9.495Visit PIA
3NordVPN9.287Visit NordVPN

Before I get to the specifics of the game, I would like to share with you some information about the location of the Blizzard servers for Overwatch. Through looking at the map of times in which updates will be deployed to the game, you can surmise the location of their data centers. The game servers appear to be located in Los Angeles, New York, São Paulo,  London, Paris, Moscow, Singapore, Taipei, Seoul, and Sydney.

How to Use a VPN to Reduce Lag in Overwatch

I’ll use ExpressVPN for the example of how to use a VPN service to play Overwatch online. First you’ll want to download the app. ExpressVPN offers free client software for Windows, Mac and Linux. In addition to free apps for iOS and Android.

Now that you’ve had a chance to download and install the software it’s time to connect. Launch the ExpressVPN client and select a server location. We’ll walk you through step by step using their Windows client.

  • ExpressVPN for gamingSince a lot of gamers like to connect to servers in the US, we used that country for our guide. ExpressVPN has a large network of servers located all over the world.
  • We recommend you select Lightway UDP for the best experience. For online gaming, we use either Lightway (PC) or OpenVPN UDP (mobile) because its faster than TCP. They also support IKEv2 and L2TP. We still recommend Lightway UDP for the best mix of speed and privacy protection.
  • Click the big round connect button. After a few seconds, you’ll see the area around the button turn green. There will also be a message letting you know the “VPN is ON”
  • You now have an IP address in the USA, as far as anyone can tell online. As such, you can reach any site as if you were sitting there. The same would be true if you connected to a server in the UK or anywhere else in the world.

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It is just that easy to do. Now that you have an IP address from an ExpressVPN server in the US, you can game, browse the Internet or watch shows as if you were actually there. Connecting to a server in the UK would give you full access to geo blocked sites there as well. The same is true from any country.

As you can probably tell by now a good VPN opens access to content around the world. If you live outside the United States the service can help you access popular services like Netflix, Hulu, and Spotify. You still need an account for services like Netflix but the VPN will help you watch US television shows and movies on Netflix as if you were sitting in the United States or any other region you would like to access.

How to Play Overwatch on PS4, Xbox One, or Nintendo Switch with a VPN

Once again I’ll use ExpressVPN for the example of how to use a VPN service to play Overwatch on your game console. They are my favorite VPN for gaming because ExpressVPN manages a very large network which makes the service a great choice for gamers.

The first step to getting set up with ExpressVPN is normally to download the client software for your system. ExpressVPN offers free client software for Windows, Mac and Linux.  In addition to free apps for iOS and Android. Obviously that won’t work for PlayStation, Xbox, or Nintendo consoles since they lack the native support for VPN. Luckily, there is still a way to encrypt your gaming traffic and send it through a VPN. The answer is running the VPN through your router. Note: if you don’t need encryption you can use the ExpressVPN MediaStramer (Smart DNS) feature without the need to configure your router. It supports a wide range of gaming consoles.

ExpressVPN router appDepending on what brand and model of router you use, it might support third party VPN services. If so you can get the necessary information from your VPN provider to set up a connection through your router. In general, routers with DD-WRT or Tomato firmware support more features than they would with the factory firmware installed. ExpressVPN customers can use their router app to simplify the process. The ExpressVPN router app offers support for a number of Asus, Linksys, and Netgear routers. They also have manual set up guides for DD-WRT, Tomato, D-Link, and TP-Link devices.

Overwatch Game Highlights

As I had previously said, Overwatch is an online competitive shooter. The game is very in-depth and Blizzard has made sure to add a ton of backstory and information. the basics of the game however are six player teams will compete on certain maps with certain objectives to be fulfilled to win. These maps are played in the game modes.

The Maps include:

  • The Temple of Anubis: Egypt. Assault map
  • Hanamura: Japan. Assault map
  • Volskaya Industries: Russia. Assault map
  • Watchpoint: Gibraltar. Escort map
  • Dorado:Mexico. Escort map
  • Route 66: United States. Escort map
  • Lijiang Tower: China. Control map
  • Ilois: Greece. Control map
  • Nepal: Nepal. Control map
  • King’s Row: United Kingdom. Assault/Escort map
  • Numbani: Western Africa. Assault/Escort map
  • Hollywood: United States. Assault/Escort map

The Map Objectives include:

  • Assault: Attackers will try to get the items that the defenders are guarding. the game ends when the attackers get all the items or the time expires. Attackers win if all items are obtained, while defenders win if the time runs out.
  • Escort: Attackers try to get the payload to the delivery point. Defenders try to stop the attackers from doing this. The game ends when the attackers deliver the pay load or the time expires. Attackers win if the payload is delivered, while defenders win if the time runs out.
  • Control: it is where the two teams fight to obtain control of one point. The first team who wins two rounds is declared the winner.

The Game Modes include:

  • Practice Range: This game mode lets you practice and train your skills.
  • Play/Practice vs AI: You can battle AI to help you figure out how the maps and the ways of winning them work.
  • Quick Play: Play unranked matches against people online.
  • Custom Game: Make your own matches and you can switch the settings to make it what you want.
  • Weekly Brawl: Play in experimental matches where the rule set will change.
  • Competitive Play: You can battle other people online and based on how you do you will be ranked.

Note: You can play with your friends in these modes.  You will just have to go to the social menu and invite them to your group. This way you can talk to each other through a mic or just type back and forth to communicate with each other.

Overwatch is very in depth, but this is not even the start of it. You will have loot that can be obtained as you level up or bought. This loot is actually a box that is full of accessories you can put on your heroes.  Speaking of heroes those are the characters you will be using. These heroes all have different roles, backstories, and abilities.

The Heroes Roles include:

  • Offense: Deal lots of damage.
  • Defense: Fortify the area.
  • Tank: Can take a lot of damage and can destroy the fortified areas.
  • Support: They boost stats, heal, and shield other members of the team from enemy attacks.

The Heroes and there abilities:


  • Genji is a cyborg who was frustrated with his body and special powers. His family had run an evil empire. He even doubted his decision to take down his families empire. When Overwatch was disbanded Genji took that time to finally accept his body and his abilities. His special abilities are Shuriken, a quick throwing object with good range, Deflect, which allows him to deflect enemy attack with his sword and send it back, Swift Strike, which is where Genji strikes his opponent with his katana and if it kills the opponent it can be used again instantly. His ultimate ability is Dragon Blade, which allows Genji to switch his katana for a new sword that allows him to kill everyone he can hit for a short period of time.
  • McCree is a outlaw that works for only what he believes in. He was a very well known outlaw before joining Overwatch, which he only did to get out of jail. After Overwatch disbanded he was taught to destroy evil corporations he use to work for. He also is a bandit for hire, but he will only accept a job if he thinks its just. His special abilities include Peacekeeper, which is where he shoots off rounds through his Peacekeeper pistol, Combat Roll, which has McCree roll in the direction he is heading and instantly reload his weapon, and Flashbang, which has him throw a blinding grenade which takes effect not long after it is thrown. McCree’s ultimate ability is Deadeye. During Deadeye McCree will aim his shots and kill everyone in site.
  • Pharaoh is a soldier who’s family has had a long history of military service. Her dream was always to become a member of Overwatch, but when she was finally able to do so it was disbanded. When is disbanded she went on to be a safe guard, but she still dreams of being a hero. Her special abilities include Rocket Launcher where she shoots missiles, Jet Jump, which has Pharaoh jump high into the air, Concussive Blast, which has her shoot rockets from her wrists. Her ultimate is Barrage and it has Pharaoh shoot mini rockets straight into a group of enemies.
  • Reaper is a terrorist. He is a very talented killer who has long opposed Overwatch. Not much is known about him however it is believed that after Overwatch disbanded he still went after the members. Reaper’s special abilities include Hellfire Shotguns where he shoots his two shotguns, Wraith Form, which puts him in a state of invulnerability, but he can’t attack or use any other abilities, and Shadow Step, which has him mark the spot he wants to go and he will then teleport to it. His ultimate ability is Death Blossom which has him unload  his Hellfire Shotguns leading to huge amounts of damage being felt to all enemies around him.
  • Soldier: 76 is a vigilante. He was part of Overwatch when it was still operating, but when it disbanded he decided that he was going to find out why. Now he will stop at nothing to find out the truth and bring the people behind it to justice. His special abilities include High Pulsed Rifle, which is a very useful rifle, Helix Rockets, he shoots out small rockets that have a small blast radius, Sprint, which allows him to dodge enemy fire by quickly running, Biotic Field, which allows him to set down a field in which every one inside that is on his team will be healed. Soldier: 76’s ultimate attack is Tactical Visor and it allows him to lock onto the enemy.
  • Tracer is a former Overwatch member who can jump through time. The time jumping had negative effects because she would randomly jump through time. Luckily a doctor built a device to fix that problem. With Overwatch over Tracer still fights for good whenever she can. Her special abilities include Pulse Pistols, which have her rapid firing her pistols, Blink, which allows her to teleport further in the direction she is moving a total of three times, and Recall, which sends her back in time.


  • Bastion is a robot that was built to keep world peace. He had no affiliation to Overwatch or its opponents. The robot simply is there to keep people safe however after a few bad experiences with humans Bastion decided to leave for more deserted areas. His special abilities include Configuration: Recon, which has him in a mobile form with a gun, Configuration: Sentry, which turns him into a sentry band in my opinion with the right position this can be overpowered, Reconfiguration allows him to switch between the two Configurations, Self Repair, which allows him to repair himself at the risk of not being able to move or fire. Bastion’s Ultimate ability is Configuration: Tank and it allows him to turn into a tank that does massive damage.
  • Hanzo is a assassin that is part of the Shimada Clan. After the death of his father the elders commanded him to make his brother behave. Once they realized he couldn’t they made Hanzo kill his brother causing him so much pain that he left the clan. Currently he just travels around while honing his skills. His special abilities include Storm Bow, which he shoots arrows from, Sonic Arrow, Henzo will launches a tracking arrow which allows him to see the enemy, Scattering Arrows, which sends out arrows that will bounce off of things and strike more than one enemy. Hanzo’s ultimate is Dragonstrike which allows him to summon a dragon that will go in one direction and eat enemies it encounters.
  • Junkrat is a criminal that is very good at what he does. He use to be a junker, but after being infected with radiation he went mad and got obsessed with being a thief. He hired another hero named Roadhog to protect him as they embark on criminal adventures. His special abilities include Frag Launcher, which has him shooting grenades that can go pretty far, Concussion Mine, which is a mine that he places down and can detonate, Steel Trap, which allows Junket to set down massive bear traps that immobilize and damage the opponent, and Total mayhem, which allows him to drop live grenades when he is killed. Junket’s ultimate ability is Rip-Tire which is a tire that he sends around and detonates when ever he wants.
  • Mei is a scientist devoted to keeping the ecosystem in check. She was part of Overwatch’s eco-Watchpoint for China. When Overwatch disbanded she decided to continue her fight to keep the world’s ecosystem in check. Her special abilities include Endothermic Blaster, which is a gun that has short range and it can slow or immobilize the enemy, Cryo-Freeze, which has Mei surround herself in ice and heal, Ice Wall, which summons a wall of ice that blocks enemy attack, sight, and movement. Mei’s ultimate ability is Blizzard which has her send out a drone to make a blizzard that will cause enemies caught in it to take damage and possibly freeze.
  • Torbjörn is a weapons designer. He worked for Overwatch creating very helpful and powerful weapons. During the fall of Overwatch some of his weapons were stolen. When this happened he decided to find them and protect them from getting in the wrong hands. His special abilities include Rivet Gun, which fires at long or short range, Forger Hammer, which repairs and upgrades turrets, Build Turret, which allows you build a turret, and Armor Pack, which is an armor pack that can be placed down so that your teammates can obtain it and get more armor. Torbjörn’s ultimate ability is Molten Core and it allows him to gain more armor and scraps.
  • Widowmaker is an expert assassin from Talon. She married a member of Overwatch, which is the enemy of Talon. They tried to kill him, but they couldn’t so they turned Widowmaker into what she is today. She killed her husband two weeks later. Now a days Widowmaker is still working for talon. Her special abilities include Widow’s Kiss, which is a high power sniper rifle, Grappling Hook, which allows her to hook on to things and draw towards them, Venom Mine, which allows her to put down a mine that she can detonate to release deadly gas onto the enemy. Widowmaker’s ultimate attack is Infra-sightallows and it allows her to see the heat signature of the enemy team and enhances the vision of her team.

I will review the characters in the tank and support roles in the near future.

As you play you can get items to customize these characters. You can get achievements and trophies as you as well.  Overwatch is a highly anticipated game put out by Blizzard. it is a six on six shooter and it has a deep history. There are lots of characters, maps, and game modes. Every character is different and they are all fun. There is items, levels, customizations, and achievements you can work at to unlock. Overwatch is a great online game that I am sure you and your friends will love playing.

Once again I recommend using a VPN to play Overwatch.  A VPN will give you an IP address from the server location you choose. It will also improve performance by lowering your ping and protect you from DDoS attacks. It will help you get past geographical restrictions and the firewalls at school or work.

Enjoy all the excitement as you play Overwatch online.  Please share this post with your friends so they can enjoy gaming from anywhere in the world with a VPN.  Follow us @VPNFan for the latest deals and guides.

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