For the longest time gamers had to rely on normal instant messaging (IM) and calling apps like Skype for text and voice chatting as they played video games together with their friends.
While those apps mostly did the job, they lacked important features that were much needed for a premium experience.
A few alternatives were always around, but it wasn’t until Discord was released that gamers finally got an app that had every feature that they needed, such as separate channels, noise suppression, custom emojis, different server roles, and dedicated in-game overlays.
However, even Discord has its flaws and suffers from several technical issues that often prevent it from launching on some machines and occasional downtimes. Even if it runs perfectly, sometimes you just don’t like the way a certain app is designed, even if it’s supposed to be the best there is.
The Best Discord Alternatives 2021
Here’s a list of the best apps like discord for gamers and non-gamers as well.
TeamSpeak is one of the oldest and best IM apps like Discord, which is made for many uses but is popular among gamers thanks to its focus on taking the least information from its users, great security, advanced permissions, noise and echoes cancellation, and lag-free voice quality.
What makes it even better are a few extra touches which other apps mostly lack, such as the ‘whisper’ feature through which you can speak to a certain user even if you are in a group call by pressing the dedicated button, which is great for working out specific strategies or even just gossiping.
Before Discord became the norm, TeamSpeak was the most notable option. And it’s safe to say that a lot of people still have not left its community because its focus on privacy is something that is rare to see in other apps today.
Overtone is one of the most literal Discord alternatives, and its UI takes the best of both Discord and Skype and mashes it together with a few new touches.
Built on VIVOX, which is referred to as the most consistent voice platform for gaming, it is recommended even by game studios and is a part of games like Fortnite, PUBG, and so on. It’s simple, fast, has every common feature you’d expect from a modern-day app, and even runs on web browsers.
So, if you can’t decide what app to use you can even just quickly drop into Overtone on the web as a temporary measure, saving you a lot of time.
Mumble is for the people who like to take things into their own hands. It is open-source software with very low latency, which allows for high quality and uninterrupted voice calls which you can customize to your liking, given that you have the knowledge required to make such changes.
It can be a bit time-consuming to set up compared to how in-and-out Discord is, especially thanks to its browser support – but once it’s set up you won’t have to do anything for a good while.
It’s the perfect alternative for people who like to make changes to the software they use and want complete privacy.
Don’t be fooled by its name, Slack is not a lazily developed software.
When it comes to team chats, it is one of the best IM apps like Discord, and some would even say it’s better thanks to its dedicated features related to collaboration, support with third-party tools like GitHub, and easy-to-use UI which you will easily get comfortable with.
It is also very easy to share large files in it, so if you share screenshots and clips of your experiences with fellow gamers then this is an app you are going to love.
We know you hate Zoom due to the fact it is currently one of the most used software when it comes to online classes, but when you look beyond the conference rooms there’s a lot more to do with the app.
The usual features such as chatting, groups, voice calling, and video calls are all here, and the app offers a really easy-to-follow UI as well.
It is very beneficial for gamers who stream together with their friends because of its great quality when it comes to video calls, and having it installed and set up already due to the online classes is a plus that would save you a lot of time.
Sure, Steam is mainly a game client and store platform, but it has enough social features that make it one of the best Discord alternatives out there.
Besides a very stable chat that keeps a fair amount of history and has cool emojis that you can expand, it also has a decent call feature, and groups that act like Discord’s servers where multiple people can join at a time and play games together.
While it’s obviously not as good as some of the other Discord alternatives, the fact it’s already attached to most of your modern PC games and won’t require you to install any additional software is a great advantage on its side.
Ventrilo is an extremely simple Discord alternative that has extremely high sound quality and does not take much space on your hardware, nor make much use of your CPU or ram.
The design is very minimal but it does not lack the basic options needed for gamers of today, offering both voice calls and instant messaging like everyone else but with more security than usual.
It’s a great alternative if you prefer minimalism over having more options than you’d ever need, but it should be kept in mind that it’s not everyone’s cup of tea.
RaidCall is one of the best IM apps like Discord, but it’s especially useful for two things that Discord falls behind in. The first thing is having giant group calls with around 100,000 users at the same time so you can talk to a team of people who work with you and even play YouTube videos, Twitch, and more.
And the second thing with the same capabilities is when you’re playing games with raid bosses such as World of Warcraft for example, so having hundreds of guild members in a call at the same time is something that RaidCall does better than anyone else in the market.
On top of everything else, it even has a section that lets you find new online communities based on specific interests, whether it’s about games or other activities or even specific jobs.
Viber is like a mixture of the classic Yahoo! Messenger, and Skype, taking the best features both have to offer and giving you a more refined experience.
The app is easy to set up and simple to use, and you can do the usual things such as making voice and video calls, and instant messaging with tons of emojis and gifs to make it more fun. It also supports sending voice messages, groups, and sending all kinds of files.
It’s the best option for you compared to other Discord alternatives if you want something that’s a bit simple but not too simple and still offers a proper user interface.
Riot is a great app that offers you most of the features that you would find in Discord, such as texting, making calls, sending files, and forming groups – but with end-to-end encryption that offers you secure communication.
Everything call you make, everything you type, and everything you send is completely secure and cannot be seen by the developers because it is sent directly from user to user, just like WhatsApp and the optional secret chats from Messenger.
It’s one of the best IM apps like Discord for those who do not want to use minimalist software like Ventrilo and still want the security of end-to-end encryption.
That’s all of the Discord alternatives for gamers in 2020 that we recommend! Did the app of your choice make it to the list? Did we miss any important instant messaging apps? Let us know your thoughts and make sure to check some of the other helpful lists on our website.
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