Skip to main content

An ontology for videogame interoperability


During the last 20 years, video games have become very popular and widely adopted in our society. However, despite the growth on video game industry, there is a lack of interoperability that allow developers to interchange their information freely and to form stronger partnerships. In this paper we present the Video Game Ontology (VGO), a model for enabling interoperability among video games and enhancing data analysis of gameplay information. We describe the creation process of the ontology, the ontology conceptualization and its evaluation. In addition, we demonstrate the applicability of the Video Game Ontology in action with three example games that take advantage of the created ontology. Also, we demonstrate the use of the VGO in enabling interoperability among the example games.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Fig. 1
Fig. 2
Fig. 3













  12. Competency questions are available at:









  21. Shortened link to competency questions:




  25. The games are also available for testing at

  26. Asteroids game is available at

  27. The Asteroids ontology is available at

  28. The game is available at

  29. The Coil ontology is available at

  30. The game is available at

  31. The Browser Quest ontology is available at


  1. Blackett T, Boad RW (1999) Co-branding: the science of alliance. Palgrave Macmillan

  2. Carter M, Gibbs M (2013) ESports in EVE Online: Skullduggery, fair play and acceptability in an unbounded competition. In: Proceedings of the 8th International Conference on the Foundations of Digital Games, pp 47–54

  3. Chan JT, Yuen WY (2008) Digital game ontology: Semantic web approach on enhancing game studies. In: 9th International Conference on Computer-Aided Industrial Design and Conceptual Design

  4. Entertainment Software Association (2013) Essential facts about the computer and video game industry: 2013 sales, demographic and usage data. Entertainment Software Association

  5. Gulati R, Garino J (1999) Get the right mix of bricks & clicks. Harv Bus Rev 78(3):107–114

    Google Scholar 

  6. Juul J (2012) A casual revolution: reinventing video games and their players. The MIT Press

  7. Lisboa MTCAG, Corruble RV, Santos ALM, Freitas F. Helping developers to look deeper inside game sessions

  8. Newzoo. Global report: US and Chinae take half of $113bn games market in 2018, 2015. available at

  9. Parkkila J, Hynninen T, Ikonen J, Porras J, Radulovic F (2015) Towards interoperability in video games. In: Proceedings of the 11th Biannual Conference on Italian SIGCHI Chapter, CHI- taly, pages 26–29, New York, NY, USA, 2015. ACM

  10. Poveda-Villalón M, Gómez-Pérez A, Suárez-Figueroa MC (2014) Oops!(ontology pitfall scanner!): An on-line tool for ontology evaluation. International Journal on Semantic Web and Information Systems (IJSWIS) 10(2):7–34

  11. Prata W, de Moraes A, Quaresma M (2012) User’s demography and expectation regarding search, purchase and evaluation in mobile application store. Work 41(Suppl 1): 1124–1131

  12. Sotamaa O, Karppi T (2010) Games as services-final report TRIM Research Reports 2, O. Sotamaa and T. Karppi

  13. Suárez-Figueroa MC, Gómez-Pérez A, Fernández-López M (2015) The NeOn Methodology framework: A scenario-based methodology for ontology development. Appl Ontol, (Preprint), 1–39

  14. Tang T, Newton GD, Wang X (2007) Does synergy work? an examination of cross-promotion effects. Int J Media Manage 9(4):127–134

    Article  Google Scholar 

  15. Uschold M, Gruninger M (1996) Ontologies: principles, methods and applications. Knowl Eng Rev 11(02):93–136

    Article  Google Scholar 

  16. Van Buskirk RE, Wright DL (2010) Virtual worlds seamless object drop integration. US Patent App. 12/756, 505

  17. Washburn J, Till B, Priluck R (2000) Co-branding: brand equity and trial effects. J Consum Mark 17(7):591–604

    Article  Google Scholar 

  18. Zagal J, Bruckman A (2008) The game ontology project: supporting learning while contributing authentically to game studies. In: Proceedings of the International Conference of the Learning Sciences ICLS 2008

  19. Zagal JP, Bruckman A (2008) The game ontology project: Supporting learning while contributing authentically to game studies. In: Proceedings of the 8th international conference on International conference for the learning sciences-Volume 2, pages 499–506. International Society of the Learning Sciences

Download references


This paper has been supported by the FPU grants (FPU2012/04084 and AP2010-1393) of the Spanish Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport. In addition, the research has been supported by TEKES, the Finnish Funding Agency for Innovation.

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Corresponding author

Correspondence to Janne Parkkila.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Check for updates. Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Parkkila, J., Radulovic, F., Garijo, D. et al. An ontology for videogame interoperability. Multimed Tools Appl 76, 4981–5000 (2017).

Download citation

  • Received:

  • Revised:

  • Accepted:

  • Published:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI: