DPS (Video Games)

The best form of defense can be a good offense, and in video games, that means applying damage. 

Video games offer many different ways to harm your opponents and measure your output. DPS is one of the most common forms of measuring damage, and it's used in a wide variety of games and genres. 

Today, we want to look at the DPS meaning in games. The term is a little more complicated than it sounds, so let’s take up our swords and explore the different ways it can be used. 

The Direct Answer 

The simplest possible breakdown of the DPS game meaning is that it stands for Damage Per Second. This is used as a measure of a character’s output of damage over time, with DPS meaning how much hurt you can expect an attacker to generate each second. 

The meaning of DPS in gaming found mainstream headway in popular MMORPGs. Here players could often test their DPS by attacking training dummies, with special tools averaging their damage numbers. 

In this way, the DPS can be seen as somebody’s performance, with higher numbers dictating the level of content or challenge they might be able to face. 

Widening the Scope 

Over time, the DPS meaning in video games has expanded to become more than just a direct term. The meaning of DPS today can also refer to one of the big three roles in many video games, called the holy trinity. 

These are the damage dealers (DPS), the ones who absorb damage to protect their party (tank), and the ones who heal (healers). In this scenario, the DPS is indicative of the video game character or class a player chooses, not just the raw damage numbers. 

The DPS meaning can also be used to refer to a character's maximum overall damage potential. This is possible when players use maths to weigh all aspects that contribute to a character's strength, including how well they work with their team's abilities. 

This is a complicated task that can lead to the formulation of new strategies. Though the DPS term found its ground in MMORPGs, it's used today in many other video game genres

Shooters, for example, can use DPS calculations on weapons like shotguns, pistols, and machine guns. When factoring in damage per shot and reload time, these factors averaged out can provide a useful measure of DPS. 

It’s also important to remember a higher DPS isn’t exactly equivalent to skill. Better gear and higher character levels can still make a higher DPS player or character worse than a lower DPS alternative who has better game awareness and teamwork. 

A high DPS is useful, but it's always up to the player and their team to apply DPS in the best possible way. A high DPS build won't matter if a player dies ten seconds into the fight, and a high DPS gun won't be useful if the player can't hit the broad side of the barn. 

Of course, if you can’t meet a DPS check and kill a boss before they nuke everyone, that’s a problem too.