We recently told you why you should have a VPN, and gave you some tips on how to choose the best VPN for you. If you are serious about your privacy or security and want to use your VPN full-time, we would strongly recommend that you seriously consider paid VPNs. While you will have to lay down some cash you will get more exit gateways, better connections and privacy than you would be able to get using a free VPN service.
It should be noted though, that many very bad services masquerade as good ones and simply because a VPN is paid does not mean that a service will protect you adequately. With that in mind, we would like to help you thin out the herd by providing you with our top five picks for a VPN. This list is by no means final and we would encourage you to try out a few different services before buying, and many do offer free trials so you can get a feel for the service before using it.
Before we jump to it, a few words about our criteria. All of the VPNs listed here perform consistently well on speed-checks and our main area of concerns are ease of use, privacy, exit locations and any extra features. We also compare the prices of annual subscriptions as these are by far the best value for money.
With that said, lets look at our top five paid VPNs for 2017.
Private Internet access
PIA consistently comes out well in reviews and it’s not without good reason. PIA takes your privacy very seriously they don’t keep any records or logs of your traffic so they don’t have anything to hand over to the authorities. They do however keep track of your meta data, but have pledged not to hand this over to authorities. PIA also offers lots of exit gateways, consisting of 3253+ servers in 25 different countries.
PIA performs admirably thanks to its high server concentration and you are able to use torrenting clients while the VPN is active. On top of all this, PIA will work on just about any OS and comes with PIA mace to help keep you safe from malware.
The bad? If you are into slick design then PIA is going to disappoint you. It takes a minimalist approach to the desktop app and is very bare bones. It also has less countries on offer than many of the others on this list. The client is also based in the US, so you should keep your eye out for any major policy shifts.
PIA won’t cost you too much at $3.33 a month if you opt for a years subscription, this makes it by far the cheapest VPN on our list. There is also a 7 day money back guarantee so you can test it out. You can pay using a number of methods, including bitcoin and even gift cards bought from stores.
Fast, good privacy, extra security features and value for money, let down only by its lackluster interface and lack of a trial. If you want value for money and are happy with a no-thrills interface, then PIA is for you. Either way, it is one of our top five paid VPNs for 2017.
IPVanish is another service that consistently comes out with strong ratings. It keeps no connection or metadata logs and it allows P2P torrenting, although it does request that its users respect the law. They do use “aggregate, anonymous, or de-identified” information for marketing and research purposes. Subscribers have the right to use the VPN on five devices simultaneously. IpVanish offers a large number of exit-gateways with over 700 servers in 60+ countries, including many that would not normally be on offer, such as Egypt or South Africa.
We recommend IPVanish – Check it out here
IPVanish consistently performs well on speed checks. The desktop interface is stylish and simple to use. They have also recently introduced an IP scrambler, a tool that can help circumvent deep packet inspections. It also supports a whole host of different OSes, so chances are it will run on your system no matter how exotic your set-up.
The bad? Well, the most quoted downside of IPVanish is the fact that it is based in the United States. This is perhaps something to be concerned about if you live in the US but as they keep no logs, they would be unable to comply with any potential information requests. Nevertheless, you should keep your ear to the ground for any potential changes in the law that might compromise the VPN service.
IPVanish errs towards the expensive, costing $6.49 if you pay for a whole year at once. You can pay using a number of methods, including bitcoin.
This Swiss based VyprVPN is one of the few services that owns and controls its entire infrastructure, which provides better speeds and privacy protection. While it is based in Switzerland any users should be aware that VyprVPN does keep connection logs for up to 30 days, in order to troubleshoot and catch any terms of service violations. It should also be noted that VyprVPN do not allow any torrenting on their service, period. They have over 700 servers in 50 global locations, giving you plenty of exit locations to choose from.
When it comes to speed, VyperVPN claims to be the best on the market and it is pretty nippy. VyperVPN is shipped with in a slick package and their desktop interface is downright stylish, showing you all of the information you need in an easy to understand package. It also works on a large number of systems
one of VyperVPN’s most interesting features sounds like it is from a Bond Movie. The Chameleon Protocol is specifically designed to by-pass oppressive state firewalls in countries like China, Russia and Iran. It scrambles VyperVPN metadata to ensure that it is unrecognizable by deep packet inspection, allowing it to by-pass restrictive networks so that you can access the Internet at large.
The bad? Well, the elephant in the room is clearly the data-logging policy. While VyperVPN does not keep usage logs they do keep a record of the time connected and amount of data transferred for 30 days. They say that this is maintained for billing, evaluation, troubleshooting and Terms of Service issues. The other major disadvantage of the service is that it does not allow you to use P2P file sharing software, even if it is for legitimate reasons.
VyperVPN is a tiered service and will set you back $5.00 a month if you choose to bill it annually for the standard service. This allows up to three simultaneous connections. If you opt for the premium service you pay $6.67 a month for an annual billing you’ll get five simultaneity connections and access to the VyperVPN cloud and the Chameleon protocol. They offer a 3 day free trial but as of publication you can not pay anonymously.
VyperVPN is great value for money and the Chameleon Protocol is pretty impressive, that being said, if you want to use it to torrent look elsewhere. If you don’t use file sharing services then you should seriously consider VyperVPN and it is definitely worth of being one of our top five paid VPNs.
VPNArea is based in Bulgaria, which makes it a great choice for anybody really interested in their privacy. They have a no-logs policy, which astonishingly, even includes metadata! All of this means that they can’t be compelled to hand over any data to the authorities. You can use it simultaneously on five devices and they have hundreds of servers across 56 countries, including some less common countries like Saudi Arabia, South Korea and Russia.
Like all of the VPNs listed here, VPNArea is going to offer you good download and upload speeds. The desktop interface is stylish, a little quirky and very open to customization. Making it great for a user with a little knowledge who likes to tweak things. It also works on pretty much any operating system. VPNArea comes equipped with a nice selection of security tools and has the optional add-on of a dedicated I.P. address with a private VPN server. While this extra is great for anybody concerned about privacy. It also opens up the possibility of running a dedicated game or mailing server.
The bad? There’s no free trial, so you will have to lay down some cash in order to give VPNArea a decent shot. That being said, they do offer a 7 day money back guarantee which removes some of the risk but you will still have to lay down some cash to give it a go.
When it comes to price VPNArea is pretty competitive for the features on offer, costing only $4.29 a month if you pay in yearly installments. If you want the dedicated I.P. address this will set you back around $15 a year which is great value. There are a number of payment options and the privacy concerned among you can elect to pay with Bitcoin This gives you access to 6 accounts and as a bonus, they even explicitly state that they allow you to share your account with friends, family and colleagues.
This Slovakian based VPN is primarily designed to be simple for a novice to pick up and use. Like most of the VPNs on this list they maintain a no log policy but the small print does allow them to collect session data that they reserve the right to investigate if they believe anyone is breaking violation of their terms and conditions. If you purchase the monthly plan you can only use it with two devices simultaneously, if you get the annual subscription you get access to five devices. They have 63 exit locations in 43 countries.
The real draw of TigerVPN is the slick interface and the fact it can be instantly set up on IoS Windows and Mac. Unfortunately they do not offer a native app for Linux, which is a bit of a drawback. They also allow you to use P2P file sharing services, if you are so inclined.
If you purchase the annual subscription you also get access to a free password manager. If you want to give tigerVPN a try also offer a free trial of up to 500mb a month, which should be enough to figure out if TigerVPN is right for you.
The bad? Well there is a severe lack of features for what you’re paying for and your settings are limited compared to our other offerings. The lack of a native Linux app is also disappointing.
TigerVPN is sitting towards the higher end of our price range, the annual subscription will set you back $6.67 a month and you have a variety of payment options on offer, including bitcoin.
TigerVPN’s slick and easy to install interface make it great for beginners and it allows torrenting services to be used but it does lack some of the advanced features of other choices on this list.
The VPNs we’ve shown you are a great place to start but it is by no means exhaustive. The best way to find a VPN that suits you is to shop around a bit. We encourage you to take advantage of any free trials and money-back guarantees before you commit to any one service.
Do you use something else you’d recommend? Disagree with any of our choices? Let us know in the comments!
5 Reasons You NEED To Play The Final Fantasy VIII Remaster
After many years of fans begging Square Enix to remaster Final Fantasy VII, they finally listened and did just that. There were numerous excuses as to why the game’s re-release had lagged behind the re-releases of both VII and IX, with the most common excuse being that the game’s original code was lost years ago. However, the company made it happen and the game is finally available for modern audiences to play on modern hardware today. We’re going to give you 5 reasons why you should do just that.
First time available on modern hardware
As we’ve already said, this is the first time that the game is available on modern hardware. While the game originally launched for PS1 back in 1999, it later got a PC port in 2000. That means that is has been a whopping 19 years since a new version of the game has been available for purchase, and that wait was a brutal one. However, it is finally over and you can now play this classic game on PS4, Xbox One and Nintendo Switch along with PC. If the lack of modern hardware support was stopping you from checking out, that excuse just got thrown out the window.
The visuals look better than ever
Thankfully, Square Enix did not just slap this port together quickly and throw it out there to shut everyone up. They did a terrific job of putting on a shiny new coat of paint for the game, with the character models in particular looking much better. While things like environment textures didn’t get quite the same amount of attention, this is nevertheless the best that the game has ever looked. It also helps that the game is simply beautiful from a design standpoint, with the game’s world being gorgeous to behold even though we’re dealing with the hardware limitations of 1999.
Quality of life improvements
While those who played the game 20 years ago will still be getting what is essentially the same experience, Square Enix did add some quality of life improvements to put it more in line with current JRPGs. These changes include the likes of increasing battle speed by 3 times, shutting off random encounters completely and even a cheat to give you max HP and limit breaks. While these may seem minor, these will go a long way to ease some of the tedium that many feel after some particularly long gaming sessions. Max HP and Limit Breaks will also make the incredibly tough Ultima and Omega Weapon boss fights a lot easier to deal with.
The Final Fantasy series is known for having its fair share of enticing side quests and mini games, but there isn’t a single one that is as addicting as Triple Triad. The game is essentially a card game that is played on a 3×3 grid, and each card has a certain number on the top, bottom, left and right sides. You need to place your cards in a manner that the numbers on your cards are higher than your opponents, and seeing as your card can be attacked from four different sides this can be tricky. You’re able to challenge many different characters to a match throughout the course of the entire game, and doing so comes with plenty of nice rewards that will make your quest easier.
The game is awesome
While our previous points focused on specific elements of the game, this one is a simple fact that has been true since 1999: the game is awesome. Unfortunately, releasing immediately after Final Fantasy VII (a watershed moment for gaming) put it under a very cruel microscope, with many knee jerk reactions simply saying it “isn’t as good as VII.” However, in the years that have passed people have revisited the game, and the consensus has definitely changed. This adventure that Square created is unlike any other in the series, being host to an ambitious and bizarre plot filled with some of the best characters the series has ever seen. If you’ve played the game before then this is the perfect time to experience this masterpiece all over again, and if you haven’t then what are you waiting for?
10 Huge Games Still Coming In 2019
2019 has been yet another good year for gaming so far, with several games releasing that will be big contenders for game of the year once the curtain closes. However, despite the year already being more than halfway over, there are still some huge titles on the horizon that are sure to make their own dents on the coming best-of lists. This article will list the 10 biggest games that are still coming in 2019.
A new game from Remedy Entertainment is always highly-anticipated, and Control is no different. The game is an action-adventure game in the same style as Alan Wake or Quantum Break, but with a supernatural twist. Players will control Jesse Faden, who possesses a variety of supernatural abilities like telekinesis, levitation and more. She will be using her abilities in order to defeat an enemy known only as the Hiss, which has corrupted reality. Control launches for PS4, Xbox One and PC on August 27th.
It has been many years since the last game in the Borderlands series released, but the hiatus is finally coming to an end very soon. Those who have played previous games in the series will feel right at home with this game, as it’s once again a loot-driven FPS. The game will offer more zany characters and a charming and insane world to explore, all while dealing with new antagonists Troy and Tyreen Calypso along with their Children of the Vault cult. Borderlands 3 launches for PS4, Xbox One and PC on September 13th, with a Google Stadia port release date being TBA.
Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Breakpoint
Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon series is returning soon with Breakpoint, which will serve as a continuation of previous game Wildlands. The game is set in an open world environment called Aurora, which is a fictional island in the Pacific Ocean. Players will control Lieutenant Colonel Anthony “Nomad” Perryman, who is a special forces operative that was sent to the island to investigate a series of disturbances in the area. Breakpoint launches for PS4, Xbox One and PC on October 4th, with a Google Stadia port coming in November.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare
Each new installment in the Call of Duty series is always huge, but Modern Warfare’s release marks a first for the long-running franchise. It will be the first game in the series that is reimagining of a previous game in the series, taking 2004’s original game and updating its mechanics and themes to match today’s world. The game will still have some of the beats that the first game had, but will also incorporate lots of surprises to make it a fresh experience. Modern Warfare launches for PS4, Xbox One and PC on October 25th.
The Outer Worlds
Obsidian Entertainment’s The Outer Worlds is one that will be very highly-anticipated for fans of Fallout: New Vegas, as this game serves as a sort of spiritual successor to that game. It will be an open world RPG that allows you to explore many unique areas crawling with plenty of deadly foes. Players will also be able to encounter and recruit NPCs as companions that have their own personal missions and stories to take part in. The Outer Worlds launches for PS4, Xbox One and PC on October 25th, with a Switch port also being in the works.
Luigi’s Mansion 3
It seemed very unlikely that Luigi’s Mansion would become a recurring franchise for Nintendo following the original GameCube game, but here we are. Luigi’s Mansion 3 is coming to Switch, which also means it will be the first home console release since the original game back in 2003. This time the game is set in a haunted hotel rather than a mansion, and Luigi has some new tricks up his sleeves to take down all those ghosts. Luigi’s Mansion 3 will launch exclusively for Nintendo Switch on October 31st.
If you’re looking for the most ambitious (and weirdest) game still coming in 2019, then look no further. Hideo Kojima’s Death Stranding has perplexed gamers ever since its announcement, and each new trailer that releases just brings more and more questions to the table. It is Kojima’s first game since breaking up with Konami after the release of Metal Gear Solid V: The Phanton Pain (and the cancellation of Silent Hills), and it looks like Kojima has taken the newfound complete creative control to deliver something truly original. Death Stranding launches exclusively for PS4 on November 8th.
Pokemon Sword & Shield
At this point we all know what to expect from a new Pokemon game, and Sword and Shield seems poised to deliver even more cute creatures for players to capture and battle very soon. What sets Sword and Shield apart from its predecessors is that it will be the first home console release for the series, which is saying something considering the series has been around for over 20 years. Pokemon Sword & Shield launches exclusively for Switch on November 15th.
If you’re a fan of Shenmue then nothing needs to be said for the inclusion of the upcoming third game on this list. Fans of the series have been waiting nearly two decades for a follow-up to the second game, and in just a couple of months that will finally be delivered to them. Brought to life thanks to an extremely successful Kickstarter campaign, the game continues the adventure of protagonist Ryo Hazuki as he hunts down his father’s killer. Shenmue III will launch for PS4 and PC on November 19th.
id Software’s DOOM 2016 was one of the best FPS games to come along in years, so it’s a no-brainer that the follow-up would be on this list. Eternal is set to offer yet another intense FPS campaign for players to plunge into, while also offering a multiplayer component that greatly improves upon the last game’s underwhelming multiplayer mode. There will also be twice as many demon types than there was in the last game, meaning that the chaos level just got that much higher. DOOM Eternal launches for PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, Google Stadia and PC on November 22nd.
5 Most Exciting Announcements From The Xbox E3 2019 Press Conference
Microsoft’s Xbox E3 2019 Press Conference has officially come to an end, and with it came plenty of big announcements to get excited about. Some new games were announced, whereas previously-announced games got new footage and/or release dates. In this article we’ve narrowed it all down to the 5 most exciting announcements.
New Xbox “Project Scarlett” Coming Holiday 2020
We’ve known for a while now that a new Xbox was in the works, but now we know when to expect it. Microsoft’s fourth console (which hopefully has a better official name than Xbox One did) will be a big step up from the previous console. Things like much faster load times, an AMD Processor that is four times more powerful than the Xbox One X, 8K Resolution and 120 FPS were all mentioned. A price and exact release date weren’t mentioned. It will also be launching with…
Halo Infinite Coming Holiday 2020, Launching On Both Xbox One and Project Scarlett
The wait for the next Halo game has been longer than ever before for series fans, and the announcement at E3 revealed that the wait will continue. Halo Infinite will not be launching until Holiday 2020, meaning it will have been 5 years since the previous game released with Halo 5. It will also be launching on Xbox One and Project Scarlett, meaning the new console will have a big launch title for fans to get pumped about.
Cyberpunk 2077 Coming April 2020, Stars Keanu Reeves
It’s hard to pick a game that people have been more excited about than Cyberpunk 2077, and after Microsoft’s press conference we’re even more excited. Not only is it coming in April of next year, but Keanu Reeves himself will be playing a “key” role in the game. Everything shown from the game has looked great so far, so hopefully it all pans out and we have another classic from CD Projekt RED come April 2020.
FromSoftware and George R.R. Martin Collaboration Elden Ring Announced
This one was actually leaked prior to the presentation, but Dark Souls developer FromSoftware and Game of Thrones author George R.R. Martin are collaborating on a new game. The game is called Elden Ring, and it will be a departure from the developer’s most recent games as it will be open world. Very little information on the game is known at this point, as it is still in the early stages of development.
Phantasy Star Online 2 Is Coming West
It took a very long time, but the popular MMORPG is finally coming west. The game is coming to Xbox One in a free-to-play form in Spring 2020, so the wait won’t be that much longer. “There will be no limitations on game experiences,”says Sega, because they want to “provide all players with a fair and exciting experience.”
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