What is the proper convention for mentioning the title of a video game in a formal research paper? Would I place the title in quotations, like the name of a short story ("Myst"), underline it, like the title of a book, or italicize it (Myst)? I would prefer an answer backed up by a formal standard such as MLA, APA, Chicago, or AP, if they cover this.


According to Diana Hacker's Research and Documentation (Bedford-St. Martin's), the MLA citation for a video game should follow this format:

enter image description here

From the same source, the APA citation for a video game should follow this format:

enter image description here

(You can't tell from the example of Sims 2, but in an APA citation, only the first word of a title is capitalized. Therefore, Call of Duty would be listed as Call of duty.

These are the formats for a Works Cited/References entry. In the text itself, the title of the video game should be capitalized and italicized, just as the title of a book would be.


The APA does in fact cover this, though under the broader category of "software."

In text, the title of the video game should NOT be italicized (p. 210). When citing the video game, you'd use the following convention:

Copyright Holder (Year of Publication). Game Title [Software]. Location of Producer: Producer.

Note that Copyright Holder and Producer may be the same.

Source: APA manual, 6th edition. I'll confirm with MLA and Chicago when I get home.

  • OP, thanks for accepting my answer, but please see the revised answer! I left out the most important word, "not." The titles should not be capitalized. For added reference, I included the page number.
    – emsoff
    Dec 29 '14 at 20:08

Chicago Manual of Style 8.190. In running text video game titles are italicized.


According to this blog post, you simply capitalize the title when writing it in-text. The citation style in the previous two answers appears correct.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.