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Tips for Citing Video Games in APA Format

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Citation is not an exciting part of writing. Regardless, it remains fundamental to research assignments. Explore how to cite video games in APA style below.

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Video games have always been an entertainment and art source, so much so that it is not uncommon to reference them in research papers. Proper citation acknowledges and credits the sources. It demonstrates the writer’s commitment to academic standards and enhances integrity. Sadly, unlike publications, major credit methodslink outside website don’t have specific formats for citing gaming software. Furthermore, it is a relatively underexplored field. Thankfully, the American Psychological Association style offers suggestions on how to write attribution for gaming. Our guide will highlight the mistakes college students make and provide valuable tricks to cite correctly.


The Main Difficulties and Pitfalls Writers Make in Citing Gaming Software

Researchers encounter several problems when quoting entertainment software. Most difficulties occur due to the evolving sensational games and the lack of standardized instructions in academic disciplines. Other popular ones are:

Limited Scholarly APA Research Paper

Interactive entertainment has limited scholarly research compared to established academic sources. The situation is even worse for newer software. In the end, the writer relies on interviews, reviews, and official sources to give context. Inadequate instructions further make it challenging to determine the appropriate format. Luckily, unlike average researchers, an APA research paper writerlink outside website has more experience with quoting gaming software. They have completed several papers that involve quoting video entertainment. As a result, they draft high-quality APA essays with zero plagiarism. So, if you don’t have the skill or time to write an assignment, hire a professional writing service for the best result.

Identifying Relevant Information

Another brick wall writers face finding accurate and relevant data. The process is time-consuming, especially for lesser-known and older entertainment. In addition, the rise of digital-online gaming presents serious problems. Online software often lacks traditional publication information. Hence, students consult online repositories, digital distribution platforms, and URLs to access related materials.

Localizations and Translations

Interactive software with localized versions and international releases has a complex quotation process. The researcher must note regional variations and language adaptations to ensure accurate MLA citations. Meanwhile, entertainment differs from traditional media by offering interactive and non-linear experiences. Therefore, writers have to indicate the relevant section, mission, and level in an attempt to locate the cited materials.

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How to Quote Games in APA Format

The American Psychological Association is one of the widely recognized quotation methods. Others include Chicago, MLA, and more. Below are the details to add to your quote:

  • The rightsholder or developer
  • Publication year
  • Entertainment's Name
  • The version or platform
  • Publisher’s location and name
  • Mention the URL

Game’s Rightsholder or Developer

A rightsholder is an organization or individual owning a video game's rights. For example, Naughty Dog developed The Last of Uslink outside website and other popular entertainments. You can find the information on the video game’s package, documentation, or screen. Use a regular font and place a period after the name.

Example: Ubisoft.

Publication Year


Add the year the entertainment was released in parentheses, using a period outside the closing parenthesis. If the release date is unknown, use “n.d.” instead.

Example: Ubisoft. (2018).

Entertainment's Name

Type the Name as it appears on the game’s screen. Use the same symbols, numbers, and capitalization. Italicize the title and capitalize the first word, proper nouns, and subtitles. However, if the name is standalone, use the title case. If the name is part of a series, use a sentence case. Put a space after the title and add the words “video game” in square brackets. Place the period outside the closing brackets.

• Standalone title: Assassin’s Creed Odyssey

• Title as part of a series: The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

So, we have Ubisoft. (2018). Assassin’s Creed Odyssey [Video game].

The Version or Platform

Mention the platforms on which the entertainment is available in square brackets. To do this, refer to the gaming consolelink outside website, operating system, and devices that support it. If the version is available on multiple platforms, separate them using a comma.

Example: Ubisoft. (2018). Assassin’s Creed Odyssey [Video game]. [Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Windows]

Publisher’s Location and Names

A video game publisher is the game's production company. Hence, they often display their headquarters location on the main title page. Add the location (city and state for US locations and city and country for all others), a colon, the production company’s name, and a period after the name.

Example: Ubisoft. (2018). Assassin’s Creed Odyssey [Video game]. [Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Windows]. Saint-Mande, France: Ubisoft.

Note: We have Ubisoft at the beginning and end of the citation examples above. The reason is that the company is both the publisher and developer.

Mention the URL (Optional)

If you accessed or retrieved the information from a website, cite the URL to allow readers to access related materials.

Example: Ubisoft. (2018). Assassin’s Creed Odyssey [Video game]. [Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Windows]. Saint-Mande, France: Ubisoft. Retrieved from https://

There are two ways to cite video games. They include in-text and footnote citations. The illustration above is used for a footnote. For intext citation, use the following:

  • Use a parenthetical citation by placing the copyright owner’s last name after the sentence. If the owner is a company, use the full name. Illustration: The year 2018 saw the release of various entertainment, with Assassin’s Creed Odyssey being among the most celebrated by fans (Ubisoft, 2018)
  • Use the right holder's last name or company name in a sentence and indicate the year in parentheses. Illustration: Ubisoft (2018) reached a new high in the gaming world by developing Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, which has become a hit with fans.

Improve Your Citation: Mastering APA for Video Games

Video gaming software evolves. As a result, citing them is a complex task. The entertainment is released on multiple platforms, with different versions and editions. In addition, they lack standardized guidelines. Hence, researchers must take care when referencing for accurate representation. The best way to do this is to understand each release's specific details. Consult discipline-specific instructions, give clear context, and use well-established sources. Furthermore, use a consistent style throughout the document to maintain clarity and avoid confusing the readers. Accurate American Psychological Association or MLA quotation is vital to academic writing. We recommend you utilize established sources to make your citation more comprehensive.