Rule 1 PLAYER1 Boosts Gaming Performance and Rules the Roost

Rule One Proteins Logo

Rule One Proteins is dedicated to producing quality supplements.

Rule One Proteins was founded in 2014 by the Costello family. It was the same family who owned and ran Optimum Nutrition, one of the largest sports nutrition brands in the industry The Costello’ssold Optimum Nutrition in 2008, and seven years later, they launched Rule One, an Aurora, IL-based company that produces supplements at their on-site, state-of-the-art manufacturing facility.

While the majority of sports nutrition brands use contract manufacturers, Rule One decided to build their own facility so they could oversee every step of the process, from ingredient-sourcing to shipping the finished product. It also enables the company to produce the highest quality products with transparent formulas at some of the most aggressively inexpensive prices in the industry.

“Creating and delivering the best protein powders and nutritional supplements in the world; that’s our mission. It’s an ongoing quest. Being good is never good enough. We wake up every morning thinking about ways to improve our products and processes. To be the best, you never stop striving.”

-Rule One Proteins

Rule One Proteins is most known for having a comprehensive selection of protein powders and flavors. But throughout 2020, the company focused on reaching more customers by expanding its line of supplements. Just last month, for Rule One’s massive Black Friday/Cyber Monday sale, they released a gaming supplement called Player1.

Rule One Levels-Up With Player1

Rule 1 Player1 NooLVL

Destroy the competition with Rule 1 Player1!

This year alone, we’ve seen more and more sports nutrition brands enter the gaming industry, and Rule One is doing it right by using cutting-edge ingredients, such as nooLVL from Nutrition21. At two scoops, Player1 contains the clinically-studied dose of nooLVL that’s been shown to enhance gaming performance, as measured by reaction time, mental energy, speed, decision-making, and performance accuracy.[1]

Player1 also contains ingredients that enhance gaming ability, including caffeine, TeaCrine (theacrine), choline bitartrate, huperzine A, and acetyl-L-tyrosine. Not only is Player1 formulated to boost mental clarity, focus, energy, and performance, but it also contains carotenoids to help protect users from unfavorable impacts of prolonged blue light exposure, such as eye strain, headaches, and fatigue. If you truly want to be on top of your game, then take eye health seriously.

Keep reading to learn more about Player1 and nooLVL. For more Rule One news, reviews, interviews, and deal alerts, just subscribe below!

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Player1 Ingredient Analysis

The supplement facts panel clearly lists the exact dose for each ingredient as one scoop (5.5g) serving size. However, for this ingredient breakdown, we’re going to analyze the two-scoop serving size because that’s how much you need to get the clinically-studied dose of nooLVL.

Arguably, nooLVL is the most powerful ingredient in this formula for enhancing gaming performance, which is why we prefer two-scoops over a single scoop.

Nonetheless, some users will likely see benefits from one scoop and it’s always a good idea to assess your tolerance at first with the lowest recommended serving size. start. With two scoops, Player1 contains 20 servings, rather than the 40 servings listed on the label. At that amount, the product still rivals most gaming supplements on the market.

Here’s what two scoops (11g) of Player1 contain:

  • Inositol-Enhanced Arginine Silicate (as nooLVL) – 1600mg

    Rule One Player1 Ingredients

    Take two scoops to get the clinically-studied dose of nooLVL!

    NooLVL is a patented, stimulant-free, nootropic that’s clinically proven to boost cognitive performance in esports athletes.[1] As of writing this article, nooLVL has over 10 patents pending worldwide, 31 supporting research studies, and 13 substantiated benefits for gamers.[2]

    Noolvl is made up of two key components:

    1. 1500 milligrams bonded arginine silicate complex
    2. 100 milligrams inositol

    Interestingly enough, nooLVL was created after Nutrition21 found out that another one of their patented ingredients, Nitrosigine, was shown to increase cognitive flexibility, prevent cognitive decline under fatigue, and boost brain function.[3,4] Nitrosigine is typically used in pre-workouts because of its ability to increase blood flow, oxygen, and nutrient delivery to working muscles by inducing vasodilation (expansion) of the blood vessels.[5] By serving as a potent nitric oxide booster, Nitrosigine improves physical and mental performance.[5] The key difference between nooLVL and Nitrosigine is the amount of inositol in each ingredient. Since gamers need more of a mental boost, Nutrition21 added an extra 100 milligrams of inositol to the bonded arginine silicate complex.

    Why gamers benefit from extra inositol

    Inositol is classified as an essential carbocyclic sugar that’s highly concentrated in the brain. It plays a crucial role in a variety of physiological processes, such as cell signaling, cell membrane stabilization, and osmoregulation.[6,7]

    Studies show that inositol enhances cognitive function via a secondary messenger system called the phosphatidylinositol (PI) cycle.[6] The PI cycle is primarily used to interpret signals between cells and neurons. Therefore, it’s crucial for both fine and gross motor-movement patterns, reaction time, decision-making, accuracy, and focus.[6]

    Since Nitrosigine is geared toward increasing physical performance, the inositol acts as a stabilizer to ensure that arginine doesn’t degrade excessively in the gastrointestinal system. Whereas with nooLVL, inositol plays a much larger role in enhancing cognitive function. An extra 100 milligrams may not seem like much, but according to the literature, that small extra bump may be what gamers need to take their performance to the next level!

    nooLVL Research

    N21 nooLVL Gamers

    Nutrition21’s nooLVL is one of the only ingredients that’s been studied in real gamers!

    One of the most interesting things about nooLVL is that it was studied in actual gamers! Using a randomized controlled trial study design, researchers recruited 60 healthy men and women who play video games at least five hours per week. The researchers analyzed the effect of nooLVL on cognitive performance and energy.[1] Volunteers were randomly assigned to take 1.6 grams of nooLVL or a placebo.

    Over the span of one week, participants consumed their assigned supplement 15 minutes before completing several cognitive tests. Directly following the tests, they played a video game for 60 minutes, after which the cognitive tests were repeated.[1]

    At the end of the study, the researchers concluded that supplementing with nooLVL effectively enhanced concentration, improved reaction times, and boosted energy levels in gamers.[1] Some may find it notable that participants played popular games from 2019, such as Madden, Call of Duty, and Fortnite.[1]

    Learn more about nooLVL:

  • N-Acetyl-L-Tyrosine – 1000mg

    N-acetyl-L-tyrosine (NALT) is a supplemental form of tyrosine, a conditionally-essential amino acid. NALT is made up of an acetyl group bound to a tyrosine molecule. In the body, tyrosine acts as a precursor to multiple catecholamine neurotransmitters, including epinephrine, norepinephrine, and dopamine. Each neurotransmitter plays different roles throughout the central nervous system.

    Rule One PRO6

    R1 PRO6 is a premium protein powder that uses six protein sources for a sustained-release of amino acids.

    Norepinephrine and epinephrine are vital chemical messengers in the sympathetic nervous system, which is responsible for your fight-or-flight response. When playing an intense video game, you want your sympathetic nervous system to be activated so you feel alert, focused, and in the zone. Whereas, dopamine is responsible for an overall sense of well-being, pleasure, and motivation. It also plays a role in our ability to think, memorize, and learn.

    Tyrosine is a conditionally-essential amino acid because it can be obtained from food and/or made by the body. However, in times of excessive stress (both physical and mental) and/or illness, it may be helpful to take a tyrosine supplement. In fact, a study published by the journal Military Medicine found that low levels of the catecholamine neurotransmitter (discussed above) can negatively affect physical performance and cognitive function.[8] Therefore, supplementing with tyrosine before a stressful situation can boost cognitive performance by increasing the production of catecholamine neurotransmitters.[8]

    It’s important to note that PricePlow’s preferred form of supplemental tyrosine is L-tyrosine, as opposed to NALT, because it does a better job of increasing plasma levels of tyrosine in the body.[9] So if we could make one change to this formula, it would be to swap out NALT for L-tyrosine. Nonetheless, you’re still likely to get some cognitive benefits from this ingredient.

    Learn more about L-tyrosine versus NALT:

    L-Tyrosine vs. N-Acetyl L-Tyrosine: A Tale of Two Tyrosines

  • Theacrine (40%) (as TeaCrine) 250mg


    Get long lasting energy and enhanced performance with TeaCrine!

    To provide an extra energy boost, in addition to the caffeine that we’ll discuss later, Rule One uses 250 milligrams of TeaCrine from Compound Solutions. TeaCrine is a trademarked form of a purine alkaloid extracted from kucha tea leaves, called theacrine. Several studies show that TeaCrine is effective at increasing energy levels, mood, physical performance, and cognitive function.[10,11] Some have even found that caffeine and TeaCrine have a synergistic effect, meaning they work better together than alone.[10,11]

    One major benefit of TeaCrine is that it doesn’t seem to impact the cardiovascular system like caffeine does.[10] For example, taking an excessive amount of caffeine can increase blood pressure, heart rate, and possibly cause palpitations (an irregular heartbeat). Thus, instead of a massive dose of caffeine to provide a rush of energy, Rule One wisely opted for a modest dose of TeaCrine paired with caffeine. Not to mention, a high intake of caffeine can cause jitters, anxiety, and nervousness, which is the last thing you want while gaming.

    Similar to caffeine, TeaCrine carries out its effects by blocking adenosine receptors. But it also modulates neurotransmitters and activates dopamine receptors.[10,11] With the addition of TeaCrine, you should get a sustained increase in energy and mood.

  • L-Theanine – 200mg

    Rule One Pump

    Boost your performance without any stimulants!

    To further prevent the chance of adverse effects from caffeine, such as jitters, Rule One contains 200 milligrams of L-theanine. The combination of L-theanine and caffeine is very common in pre-workouts and nootropics. However, the caffeine dose is typically higher than L-theanine. Rule One took a different approach by upping the L-theanine rather than the caffeine. So if Player1 feels different than other gaming supplements, this might be one of the reasons.

    What is L-theanine anyway?

    L-theanine is a naturally-occurring amino acid that’s found in tea leaves, similar to caffeine and theacrine. Instead of acting as a stimulant, L-theanine has the unique ability to induce calmness and relaxation, but without drowsiness.[12,13] There’s a substantial amount of evidence to suggest that caffeine and L-theanine act synergistically to increase cognition.

    Two studies published in the journal Nutritional Neuroscience found that supplementing with caffeine and theanine results in greater improvements in cognitive function, focus, alertness, accuracy, and processing speed than either compound on their own.[12,13] Independently, L-theanine can enhance dopamine levels in the brain, which is a key neurotransmitter responsible for thinking, memorizing, and learning.[13]

  • Caffeine (as green coffee bean extract and zumXR delayed-release caffeine) – 150mg

    Caffeine is one of the most popular ingredients in the sports nutrition industry, so it’s no surprise that it’s included in the majority of gaming supplements as well. Even though Rule One uses a modest amount of caffeine, we still wouldn’t recommend taking Player1 within five to six hours of bedtime.

    Rule One Player1 Gummy

    Player1 Gummy Grenade will blow-up your taste buds!

    Another unique thing about Player1 is that it uses two different sources of caffeine for sustained energy. The first is green coffee bean extract. By using this natural form of caffeine, as opposed to caffeine anhydrous, users are less likely to experience a sharp rise and fall in energy because it takes longer for the body to metabolize it.

    The second source is zumXR delayed-release caffeine, which features a one-hour bolus, delayed-release profile that further mitigates a potential crash in energy that’s often associated with stimulants.[14] So as TeaCrine and caffeine from the green coffee bean extract quickly increases energy, zumXR delayed-release caffeine keeps levels elevated for hours of gaming.

    Regardless of the form, caffeine works by inhibiting adenosine receptors and phosphodiesterase.[15,16] Adenosine is a nucleoside that’s responsible for slowing neural activity, whereas phosphodiesterase breaks down a secondary messenger that’s crucial for energy production and metabolism, called cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP). An abundance of studies has shown that caffeine is safe and effective at improving mental and physical performance.[15,16]

  • Huperzia Serrata Leaf Extract – (std. To 1% Huperzine A) – 10mg

    Rule One Fruit Greens Powder

    Increase your micronutrient intake with Rule One Fruit & Greens!

    To complement choline bitartrate, which we discuss later, Rule One uses 10 milligrams of huperzia serrata leaf extract standardized to contain 1% huperzine A. Huperzia serrata, also known as toothed clubmoss, is an herb historically used in traditional Chinese medicine to treat a variety of ailments.[17]

    Nowadays, huperzine A (the main bioactive constituent of huperzia serrata) is a popular ingredient in nootropics, gaming supplements, pre-workouts, and sleep-aids, thanks to its ability to boost acetylcholine levels. Unlike supplemental choline, which raises acetylcholine levels directly, huperzine A keeps acetylcholine levels elevated by inhibiting the enzyme that breaks down acetylcholine (acetylcholinesterase).[17]

    Thus, taking huperzine and choline bitartrate together can synergetically raise acetylcholine levels and keep them elevated for an extended period of gaming. Combining this dynamic duo can result in better focus and mind-to-muscle connection. Moreover, some research shows that huperzine A possesses potent neuroprotective properties.[17]

  • Lutemax 2020 (Marigold Flower Extract)

    The previous ingredients we’ve discussed primarily focus on increasing gaming performance in the short term, but Lutemax 2020 is all about improving eye health and keeping you in the game for the long haul.

    Lutemax 2020 LogoLutemax 2020 is an award-winning marigold extract from OmniActive Health Technologies that contains three beneficial macular carotenoids:

    • Lutein – 2.5mg

    • Zeaxanthin Isomers (RR-Zeaxanthin and RS-Zeaxanthin) – 500mcg

    Lutemax 2020 was designed to promote eye health, cognition, and overall well-being by enhancing the eye-brain connection.[18] Each macular carotenoid listed above absorbs light at different wavelengths. Thus, when used in combination, they absorb a broader spectrum blue light and offer more protection to retinal tissue. Moreover, Lutein and zeaxanthin may provide extra cognitive benefits because they readily cross the blood-brain barrier and are heavily involved in memory and processing information.[18]

    Lutemax 2020 has been scientifically proven to:

    • Increase serum levels of lutein and zeaxanthin in just two weeks
    • Enhance markers of visual performance
    • Decrease symptoms of prolonged blue light exposure (including eye strain, headaches, and fatigue)
    • Reduce stress and cortisol levels
    • Improve cognitive function and brain-derived neurotrophic factor[18]

    We appreciate that Rule One included Lutemax 2020 in Player1 because eye health is paramount for optimal gaming performance.

  • Added Vitamins/Minerals

    Rule One Player1 Rainbow Respawn

    Level up and curb your cravings with Player1 Rainbow Respawn!

    In addition to the primary ingredients, Player1 also contains the following vitamins and minerals for potential added benefits:

    • Vitamin C (as Ascorbic Acid & Acerola Fruit Extract) – 500mg (556% DV)

    • Niacin (as Niacinamide) – 20mg (126% DV)

    • Vitamin B6 (as Pyridoxine HCL) – 10mg (1,176% DV)

    • Vitamin B12 (as cyanocobalamin) – 150mcg (6,250% DV)

    • Choline (as Choline Bitartrate) – 800mg (146% DV)

    • Magnesium (as Magnesium Oxide) – 40mg (8% DV)

    The benefits of choline for gaming

    From this list, the only nutrient we’re going to highlight is choline, due to its profound effects on cognitive function. While choline is neither a vitamin nor a mineral, it’s considered an essential nutrient because it contributes to several physiological processes.[19] Choline can be produced by the body but at an amount insufficient for optimal health. Choline is also found in a number of foods, such as egg yolks, meat, poultry, fish, sunflower seeds, and cruciferous vegetables.[19]

    There are several forms of supplemental cholineRule One chose to use choline bitartrate. Choline bitartrate consists of a choline molecule bound to two tartaric acids, which is said to increase choline’s bioavailability. In other words, more choline is absorbed and utilized as opposed to excreted from the body as waste. The primary objective of taking an exogenous form of choline is to increase acetylcholine production. Acetylcholine is a neurotransmitter that’s important for cell-to-cell communication.[20]

    As we discussed in the huperzia serrata section, combining choline bitartrate with huperzine A synergistically raises acetylcholine levels and keeps them elevated for hours. A boost in acetylcholine should further enhance your mental focus and overall gaming performance.

Player1 Flavors

Here’s an updated list of all available Player1 flavors:

    Rule One Goes Beyond Protein Powders

    In 2014, Rule One emphasized creating high-quality protein powders. To this day, two of their best selling products are R1 Protein and R1 Whey Blend. In our opinion rule, Rule One offers a lot more than ordinary protein powders.

    Rule One Protein Mousse

    Rule One Protein Mousse tastes almost as sweet as victory!

    In terms of sports performance, Rule One has a variety of peri-workout products, such as:

    • R1 Pump: a stimulant-free pre-workout that offers nitric oxide support
    • R1 Pre-Train: a stimulant-based pre-workout
    • R1 Pre-Amino: an amino acid with natural caffeine
    • R1 Essential Amino 9: an essential amino acid and hydration supplement

    Rule One has also been expanding its health and wellness line, with products like:

    • R1 Energized Fruits & Greens: a greens powder with natural caffeine
    • Train Daily: a multivitamin
    • R1 Collagen Peptides: a hydrolyzed collagen peptide powder
    • R1 Multi-Source Collagen: a powder with type I, II, III, V, and X collagens

    Since Rule One is well-known for their protein powders, it’s easy to forget about their other products. Not to mention, the company has been releasing several functional foods this year as part of their new “performance pantry,” including WheyCakes, Easy Protein Mousse, Easy Protein Oatmeal, and Easy Protein Omelette. Rule One’s goal is to reach as many consumers as possible and they’ve made tremendous strides doing so.

    We’re excited to see what’s in store for Rule One next year! Subscribe below for more Rule One news, reviews, interviews, and deals from PricePlow.

    Rule 1 Player 1 – Deals and Price Drop Alerts

    Get Price Alerts

    No spam, no scams.

    Disclosure: PricePlow relies on pricing from stores with which we have a business relationship. We work hard to keep pricing current, but you may find a better offer.

    Posts are sponsored in part by the retailers and/or brands listed on this page.

    About the Author: Mike Roberto

    Mike Roberto

    Mike Roberto is a research scientist and water sports athlete who founded PricePlow. He is an n=1 diet experimenter with extensive experience in supplementation and dietary modification, whose personal expertise stems from several experiments done on himself while sharing lab tests.

    Mike's goal is to bridge the gap between nutritional research scientists and non-academics who seek to better their health in a system that has catastrophically failed the public. Mike is currently experimenting with a low Vitamin A diet.

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    1. Tartar, J. et al. Oct. 2019. “A Prospective Study Evaluating the Effects of a Nutritional Supplement Intervention on Cognition, Mood States, and Mental Performance in Video Gamers.” Nutrients vol. 11,10.
    2. Nutrition21. Accessed Dec. 2020. “nooLVL.”
    3. Kalman, D. et al. Nov. 2016. “Randomized Prospective Double-Blind Studies to Evaluate the Cognitive Effects of Inositol-Stabilized Arginine Silicate in Healthy Physically Active Adults.” Nutrients vol. 18,8; 736.
    4. Evans, M. et al. July 2020. “Inositol-Stabilized Arginine Silicate Improves Post Exercise Cognitive Function in Recreationally Active, Healthy Males: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Crossover Study.” Journal of Exercise and Nutrition vol. 3,3. (full-text PDF)
    5. Rogers, JM. et al. Feb. 2020. “Acute effects of Nitrosigine and Citrulline Malate on Vasodilation in Young Adults.” Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition vol. 17, 12.
    6. Michell, R. Mar. 1975. “Inositol Phospholipids and Cell Surface Receptor Function.” Biochimica Et Biophysica Acta vol. 415,1; 81-7.
    7. Levine, J. May 1997. “Controlled Trials of Inositol in Psychiatry.”; European Neuropsychopharmacology: the Journal of the European College of Neuropsychopharmacology vol. 7,2; 147-55.
    8. Attipoe, S., et al. July 2015. “Tyrosine for Mitigating Stress and Enhancing Performance in Healthy Adult Humans, a Rapid Evidence Assessment of the Literature.” Military Medicine vol. 180, 7. 754-65.
    9. Roberto, M. May 2017. “L-Tyrosine vs. N-Acetyl L-Tyrosine: A Tale of Two Tyrosines.” PricePlow Blog.
    10. Compound Solutions. Accessed Dec. 2020. “TeaCrine Ingredient Information”.
    11. Bello, M. et al. Apr. 2019. “The Effects of TeaCrine and Caffeine on Endurance and Cognitive Performance During a Simulated Match in High-Level Soccer Players.” Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition vol. 16, 20.
    12. Owen, G. et al. Aug. 2008. “The Combined Effects of L-theanine and Caffeine on Cognitive Performance and Mood.” Nutritional Neuroscience vol. 11,4; 193-8.
    13. Giesbrecht, T. Dec. 2010. “The Combination of L-Theanine and Caffeine Improves Cognitive Performance and Increases Subjective Alertness.” Nutritional Neuroscience vol. 13,6; 283-90.
    14. ZumXR. Accessed Dec. 2020. “Supplements: zumXR Delayed-Release Caffeine.”
    15. McLellan, T. et al. Dec. 2016. “A Review of Caffeine’s Effects on Cognitive, Physical and Occupational Performance.” Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews vol. 71. 294-312.
    16. Trexler, E. et al. Sep. 2016. “Effects of Coffee and Caffeine Anhydrous on Strength and Sprint Performance.” European Journal of Sport Science vol. 16,6. 702-10.
    17. Qian Z. et al. Aug. 2014. “Huperzine A: Is it an Effective Disease-Modifying Drug for Alzheimer’s Disease?” Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience 6:216
    18. OmniActive Health Technologies. Accessed Dec. 2020. “Lutemax 2020.”
    19. National Institute of Health. Accessed Dec. 2020. “Choline – Fact Sheet For Health Professionals.” Office of Dietary Supplements.
    20. Purves D. et al. Nov. 2015. “Neuroscience.” 2nd edition. Sunderland (MA): Sinauer Associates, 2001. Acetylcholine.

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