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#1 Sep 07 2010 at 5:18 PM Rating: Good
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So..I have grown tired of dial up, and (CRAP) satellite internet trying to play online games, and I was just wondering:

How is 3G services for online gaming? Specifically XIV. I see some really decent looking deals compared to what I have now. Main concern is if I can run it smoothly without having lag every 3 seconds (re: upload cap) Thanks for any insight.
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#2 Sep 07 2010 at 5:36 PM Rating: Decent
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It would depend heavily on your area. I used to play EQ using a tethered cellphone about 5 years ago and it was fairly smooth. Just keep in mind that MMOs require an "always on" connection. 3G doesn't fall into that category.

I would check usage rates. Mobile connections usually have a data limit with very high prices if you exceed those limits.

Your best bet is likely a cable connection. If that's not an option, DSL (depending on your location) or Satellite (not considered an always on connection, but usually manageable).
#3 Sep 07 2010 at 5:51 PM Rating: Decent
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3G often is high latency which isn't always great for gaming, although not as important in MMOs as say a FPS game.

I would try and go with another solution like DSL if at all possible.
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#4 Sep 07 2010 at 5:59 PM Rating: Good
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DSL is unfortunately not obtainable around my area :(

incase it helps any, its the Virgin Mobile 3G internet. It has no limits, and no contracts, 40 bucks a month. I guess if all else fails, I can atleast try it for a month and experiment on my own.
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#5 Sep 07 2010 at 6:02 PM Rating: Good
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I've tethered 3G on FFXI and it worked near-flawlessly. It honestly seemed more responsive than my cable connection at home. The only problem was that every 15 or 20 minutes the connection would either drop or close-to-drop. I'm not sure if that was my phone's fault, the network, or the tethering software. I was using 3G on T-mobile for the record.
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#6 Sep 07 2010 at 6:08 PM Rating: Good
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When it dropped, were you able to recover it fairly quickly? Or did it take awhile to restore?

I hope in the event that its a viable option, that I will have little to no connection trouble, seeing as how I live with a few hundred feet of one of the cell phone towers.

In hindsight, I suppose anything is more viable than satellite internet.
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#7 Sep 07 2010 at 6:10 PM Rating: Good
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HAHA! this question is right up my alley! i trouble shoot 3g fora living, depending on your location and teathering costs, 3g is definatly not an ideal way of gaming, unless oyu have a rocket stick or something with unlimited data, you may go over your plan quickly, it can be VERY costly. If you have unlimited data on teh otehr hand, it may not be the BEST connection, much better then dial up though. If your usign a phone you would have to realize any SMS or calls you receive would cut your connection to data. Rocket sticks or rocket hubs, or "Wireless internet" Based off cell phone towers. IS better then dial up but just gotta keep an eye on way to many things, dont treat it as a 100% stable connection.
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#8 Sep 07 2010 at 6:16 PM Rating: Good
Also something to consider is that "unlimited" data is almost never truly unlimited. But I guess that would depend on how much you played the game.
#9 Sep 07 2010 at 6:25 PM Rating: Good
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Probably have a point there, I bet there is a limit somewhere in the fine print.

But from what Ive seen, its pretty much unlimited. Doesnt require a subscription. Pay by month. Dont even have to buy a cell phone plan(..I think) It almost does seem too good to be true. Has anyone here tried Virgin Mobile internet? I guess that would be the best question to ask :)
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#10 Sep 07 2010 at 6:59 PM Rating: Good
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I spent a decent amount of time with AT&T 3g as my only option for online games (stupid work keeping away from home all hours). AT&T 3g before the loliphone for me in Houston was a consistent 30% packet loss and erratic reply times between 100ms and 300ms with about 700kb/s to 1.1mb/s. RF Online played perfectly. FFXI was playable with frequent dc. Wow was almost unplayable. Lineage 2 seemed playable but i would just drop dead for no reason every 30 minutes or so. Eve online was totally unplayable, unless you enjoy getting lossmails without ever seeing who shot you... After the advent of loliphone i canceled my AT&T account because packet loss jumped to a consistent 75%, reply times to 300ms+, and connection speed dropped to about 200kb/s. Everything became unplayable. Keeping in mind this was using a pcmcia 3g card, not tethering.

Now (only when i have to go mobile, thank Raptor Jesus) i have a Sprint 4g mobile hotspot. I get about 15% packet loss and reply times of 30ms to 90ms, and connection speed of 1.5mb/s to 4.5mb/s. After about 2 hours, connection speed drops to a consistent 500kb/s, although Sprint denies throttling. FFXI is totally doable, although i dc every 45 minutes like clockwork, and again Sprint denies resetting the connection. I don't know about other games because i quit everything but FFXI.

I no longer have 3g to test, but for me 4g in FFXIV beta is useless. I can't stay connected for more than a minute, and everything is extremely laggy. However, i'm playing on a laptop which only earned 1001 in FFXIV benchmark, so take with a grain of salt. On 20mb/s broadband i can play FFXIV at minimum settings with reasonable lag. And yes playing with minimum settings makes the game look like FFIII, the best game of all time. I won't be able to provide better information than this until ps3 launch because i refuse to buy another computer this year, soz.

Odd thing is, this stupid custom 18" vaio cost me as much as a used Honda and has no issues with CAD, Maya, 3DS Max, or batch video encoding jobs. Makes me mad as **** i have to play a mmo of all things at min settings after only 9 months. But i guess i should have learned my lesson a while back after an alienware aurora sli laptop could not play AoC or WAR after only 5 months. One of these days i'll learn to stop buying laptops. :( Although, alienware sli laptops do make lovely paperweights...



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#11 Sep 07 2010 at 7:03 PM Rating: Good
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Probably not such a good idea. You know how the UI lags and everything? That's mainly because every single interaction is sent to the server. Eventually they'll fix it but over a 3G interface you'll be stuck with this forever.
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#12 Sep 07 2010 at 7:06 PM Rating: Decent
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There are still places without DSL/Cable? Must be peaceful.
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#13 Sep 07 2010 at 7:10 PM Rating: Good
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I actually just played about 30 minutes of FFXIV while tethered to see how it worked, and honestly it was flawless. Connection never dropped, never R0'd or anything. My connection icon was mostly always green, and only orange for a couple seconds every once in a while.

I don't know if it's viable for long term since I've only tried it out for a little bit, but it definitely seems doable.

Someone mentioned before that if you get a call/text it will drop your data connection, but that's only true if you use a CDMA network (Verizon/Sprint are the main examples). GSM (AT&T and T-mobile) is able to take calls and use data at the same time.
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#14 Sep 07 2010 at 7:11 PM Rating: Good
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There are still places without DSL/Cable? Must be mother effing bloody **** on earth. LOLAMERICUH!!!


fify :p
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#15 Sep 07 2010 at 7:12 PM Rating: Good
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I've been gaming on a 1 MB dsl line for years, its $20, and while patching takes forever, gameplay is completely fine. I'd highly recommend that over 3g
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#16 Sep 07 2010 at 7:15 PM Rating: Good
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davess wrote:
Someone mentioned before that if you get a call/text it will drop your data connection, but that's only true if you use a CDMA network (Verizon/Sprint are the main examples). GSM (AT&T and T-mobile) is able to take calls and use data at the same time.

GSM does it too I thought. Acually im positive it does, I work for a GSM network in canada, any calls or text intrupt data.

Edited, Sep 7th 2010 9:16pm by Puppy1
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#17 Sep 07 2010 at 7:15 PM Rating: Good
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Starbucks, Barnes&Nobel, Borders, McDonalds, Panera Bread, Neighborhoods with unsecured wi-fi, public libraries - the possibilities are endless. Just buy a bunch of disguises (like those glasses with the big nose and mustache) so it doesn't look like you are a stalker.
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#18 Sep 07 2010 at 7:28 PM Rating: Good
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Puppy1 wrote:
davess wrote:
Someone mentioned before that if you get a call/text it will drop your data connection, but that's only true if you use a CDMA network (Verizon/Sprint are the main examples). GSM (AT&T and T-mobile) is able to take calls and use data at the same time.

GSM does it too I thought. Acually im positive it does, I work for a GSM network in canada, any calls or text intrupt data.

Edited, Sep 7th 2010 9:16pm by Puppy1


Hmm, maybe I'm mistaken. I swear I've been tethered and answered calls before though. I'll test it out again to be sure. Does it just drop the data for an instant, or is it for the duration of the call?
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#19 Sep 07 2010 at 7:46 PM Rating: Good
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Duration on the call, network cant really handle both at once, it considers calls more important, Also if your teatherign make sure its not jsut preloade dor cashed stuff going on, try opening a new webpage to make sure.
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#20 Sep 07 2010 at 8:25 PM Rating: Good
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Oy. Such mixed replies. Some run the game smoothly on 3G, and some dont. This is pretty perplexing.


Oh, and the bloody **** on Earth comment is the most accurate ^^d
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#21 Sep 07 2010 at 8:34 PM Rating: Good
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If cable or DSL isnt available you check on satalite net? great downloads , uploads not so much. Dont know who provides it but might be an option for you.
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#22 Sep 07 2010 at 8:37 PM Rating: Good
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Yes, I currently have Hughesnet Satellite internet at the moment, and is wretched for playing online games. There's a constant 2-3 sec lag, and thus, the question for 3G. However, if it has constant lag like Satellite internet, then tell me now so I can save some time :D
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#23 Sep 07 2010 at 8:40 PM Rating: Good
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Oy. Such mixed replies. Some run the game smoothly on 3G, and some dont. This is pretty perplexing.



thats cause its a shared network. if you have a ton of people using the same tower as you, its gonna go slow. If everyone around you has their own cable line, you're not fighting people for it and you're speeds going to be great.
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#24 Sep 07 2010 at 8:45 PM Rating: Good
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Cyanxi wrote:
Yes, I currently have Hughesnet Satellite internet at the moment, and is wretched for playing online games. There's a constant 2-3 sec lag, and thus, the question for 3G. However, if it has constant lag like Satellite internet, then tell me now so I can save some time :D


Ahh I see. Depends on your signal strengh and proximity to the tower, you wont find as much lag with a good signal. But as i mentioned earlier, double and tripple check the plan your going for, for the 3g network. And make sure theres a way to keep an eye on your data usage as well. Im kinda curious myself how it would work for FF14, as sombody posted earleir they did it with 11 and it worked well so, Honesly you will keep gettign conflicing answers for this. Too many variables to get a good answer. If you do go this route, make sure your not locked into a contract in case your Satalite internet works better, but also, let us know the result you get. As i said im Kinda curious of the results of this. :) I might be able to test this out myself in a month or so lol.

Edit: yeah my spellign sucks i know. typign this while working so its kinda rushed lol

Edited, Sep 7th 2010 10:46pm by Puppy1
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#25 Sep 07 2010 at 8:46 PM Rating: Good
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Oh! Makes sense. I did not know. I guess Im more or less a complete novice in the internet connection departments. I do live in a pretty rural area however, so I am starting to think it might be worth trying. Thank you for that bit of insight :)


Here, this is the link for Virgin Mobile 3G, [link=http://www.virginmobileusa.com/mobile-broadband/[/link]

It says here that for 40 bucks a month, that I can get unlimited web browsing, and downloading. So, unless its a really clever(re: deceptive) marketing strategy, I shouldnt have to worry about going over the limit, and should hopefully have a good internet connection. Anyone see any possible mistakes I may be missing?

Edit: Directed towards KujaKoF incase of confusion.
Edit 2: Added link for Virgin Mobile
Edited, Sep 7th 2010 10:48pm by Cyanxi

Edited, Sep 7th 2010 10:57pm by Cyanxi
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#26 Sep 07 2010 at 9:31 PM Rating: Good
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Well it does say unlimited, yeah take that a with a rocketstick, before you get it though check on the contract, It dosnt show one but dosnt mean there isnt one. See if theres a usage/days clause where you have so many days or so much data to return it if there is a contract. That is just in case your in an area where your signal wouldnt be that great or the lag dosnt justify teh price

Speed varies based on location and coverage with average downlink data speeds between 600 and 1400 Kbps. Virgin Mobile does not restrict your speeds based on data usage caps.

600 would be lag issues 1400 you Might be okay.
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#27 Sep 08 2010 at 4:53 AM Rating: Decent
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Hi-

I've used the ATT 3G service for about 5 years now. My contract is from the old LaptopConnect service for business. I use a pcmca card that has worked flawlessly once I deleted the included ATT software and just used the 3G card as a standard internet connection. Just create a new internet connection like you would for a home pc.

Once I did that, no more dc's every 20 minutes and the connection stays on and never drops. I have a average speed of 400kbs at all times. My contract has unlitmited service, as well it should for $100 per month, so I don't worry about added charges. In my line of work, large file transfers are the norm.

I've played FFXI on this 5 year old laptop, using my ATT 3G connection for hours at a time, without any dc or severe lag spikes once I deleted the ATT software. The best service using 3G will be early morning or late evening. I think it's like cable; the fewer people on the better the service.

I haven't tried FFXIV on this laptop, it only scores 500'ish on the benchmark.
#28 Sep 08 2010 at 7:00 PM Rating: Good
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Ok...so back again! With one hopefully final question.
After browsing around some more, I have found another company that gives a 1gb/day limit. That would be enough to play 3-5 hours a day correct? Not sure about the speed, but I figure I'd use Puppy1's info as reference when I go to check it out. Any information is appreciated :)
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#29 Sep 08 2010 at 7:33 PM Rating: Decent
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in a 4 hour session you'll burn through about 80mb or so. there isn't a lot of data being transfered during gameplay. update/patches though, you'll want to be careful.

you don't have to concern yourself so much with your data limits as far as transfer speed goes but for latency. you're going to be looking at a 200-300ms ping to JP servers to begin with, adding an additional 250+ ms to that would kinda suck. but if you're getting full signal to a decent 3G network you shouldn't ping over 100ms.
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#30 Sep 08 2010 at 8:09 PM Rating: Good
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So..basically as long as I can get a good signal, then I'll be set and good to go?
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#31 Sep 08 2010 at 8:44 PM Rating: Good
We sell that Virgin Mobile device at my Best Buy.

The one catch I know of is that you can only use it on Sprint's network. No Roaming allowed, that's how they got to offer it lower than Sprint offers it on their own network. Other than that, I believe it is completely unlimited.

To see if you're eligible, enter your address here, click the data coverage tab, and if you're bright orange you're good...any other color won't work with the virgin plan.
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#32 Sep 08 2010 at 8:52 PM Rating: Excellent
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no roaming ? seriously? well data roaming is very espensive :P But yeah, good singal and should be good to go. As measuewup posted though updates you may want to borrow sombodys internet connection for that.

@ yabusame. You get many returns on that device? or waht type of feedback you get on it?

Edited, Sep 8th 2010 10:52pm by Puppy1
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#33 Sep 08 2010 at 9:06 PM Rating: Good
I'm in Jacksonville Fl, and we have great Sprint coverage, so we haven't had any returns on that one so far...AT&T gets returned all day here though...It's different in every market...
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#34 Sep 08 2010 at 9:25 PM Rating: Excellent
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Yabusame wrote:
I'm in Jacksonville Fl, and we have great Sprint coverage, so we haven't had any returns on that one so far...AT&T gets returned all day here though...It's different in every market...


But of course :) some places diffrent carriers have better coverage then others. I sent people to our compedators before because we didnt have service.
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