I think we can all agree that gaming VOIP has become completely second nature to online gamers in the past decade or so. Communication while competitive gaming is simply vital, and since you are almost never sitting next to your teammates, you pretty much have no choice other than to use some kind of VOIP service. Even outside of competitive gaming, VOIP adds a whole other level of fun to online gaming, so much so that it is rare to meet someone who doesn’t use it. And good luck finding a gaming community or clan that doesn’t require VOIP of some kind.
When it comes to VOIP services, Ventrillo and TeamSpeak3 are the current big hitters out there, with Mumble and even Skype being contenders as well. For years I used Ventrillo, and then switched to TeamSpeak3 for another very long stretch (gun to my head, I would still take TS3 over Vent). However, two years ago I was invited into the closed beta for a new VOIP known as GameVox, and I was so impressed with it that I haven’t used anything since. Currently, GameVox is in its public beta phase, and while I know that it can be difficult to rip gamers away from their VOIP service of choice, I really do recommend that everyone give the GameVox beta a try.
In day to day use, GameVox probably doesn’t feel any different than the other VOIP clients out there, but in my mind that is a big plus given how good Ventrillo and TeamSpeak3 are. The sound quality of GameVox is top notch, and never once have I had any issues with anyone sounding like crap due to the program itself (gamers can still be susceptible to issues at their end). Even so, there are some other things that help set GameVox apart from the pack.
First off, and I like this the most, GameVox is cloud based and thus one’s “server” is actually spread across multiple GameVox servers. This makes the service very reliable. It used to drive me absolutely nuts having my Ventrillo or TeamSpeak3 service interrupted because my connection to the server location was disrupted, or the server experienced downtime. That seems essentially non-existent with GameVox. This is a huge plus!
Another great thing is that all aspects of GameVox are run by the GameVox team, including both development and service providing. No more having to use a third party hosting site to run your VOIP service. You simply sign up with GameVox, download it, and run it through them. What is really great about this is that all tech support for both client and hosting goes through GameVox, and I have found them to be extremely helpful and responsive. They are also very open to suggestions from users.
There are some other great features of GameVox, such as the added security, server customization, low system resource requirements, and built in friends lists. I highly recommend reading over the GameVox feature comparison page to see how it measures up against the other VOIP clients. Of course, all of the typical options for setting up channels and permissions are there, so if you require a complicated server structure you will be covered. Plenty of features are still planned as well, so if you don’t see a feature, chances are you will see it at some point. Oh, and I should also mention that GameVox does have an overlay feature too if you like to see your VOIP client information from inside your games.
As I mentioned above, GameVox is currently in it public beta phase, and development of the client continues. There was a big update just the other day that added some great new features. If you would like to try out the service, you can sign up and set up a 6-person server for free, which for many gamers might be all they ever need. If you need more space you can opt to purchase a 25, 50, or 200-person server, which are quite reasonably priced in my opinion. You are also welcome to try out the Death by Beta GameVox server in order to demo the client (it is generally empty as we only use it when we get together to test out games or play something on the side). You will need to sign up for a GameVox account first in order to check out our server. Don’t make us regret opening it up to you!
So, as you can see I am a big believer in GameVox, and I encourage all of you to give it a chance, especially if you are in the market for a new VOIP client and service. Check it out!
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