Who killed Albert Einstein? From open data to murder mystery games

Gabriella Alves Bulhões Barros, Michael Cerny Green, Antonios Liapis, Julian Togelius

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    —This paper presents a framework for generating adventure games from open data. Focusing on the murder mystery type of adventure games, the generator is able to transform open data from Wikipedia articles, OpenStreetMap, and images from Wikimedia Commons into WikiMysteries. Every WikiMystery game revolves around the murder of a person with a Wikipedia article, and populates the game with suspects who must be arrested by the player if guilty of the murder or absolved if innocent. Starting from only one person as the victim, an extensive generative pipeline finds suspects, their alibis, and paths connecting them from open data, transforms open data into cities, buildings, nonplayer characters, locks and keys, and dialog options. This paper describes in detail each generative step, provides a specific playthrough of one WikiMystery where Albert Einstein is murdered, and evaluates the outcomes of games generated for the 100 most influential people of the 20th century.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Article number8291157
    Pages (from-to)79-89
    Number of pages11
    JournalIEEE Transactions on Games
    Issue number1
    StatePublished - Mar 2019


    • Adventure games
    • Data adventures
    • Data games
    • Game generation
    • Murder mystery
    • Open data

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Software
    • Artificial Intelligence
    • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
    • Control and Systems Engineering


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