Different methods of cathodic vacuum arc evaporation are used to deposit oxynitrides. MeaMebSicNxOyCz coating systems with a+b+c+x+y+z =100 at.%. The paper summarizes the results of these coatings. Me is at least one metal of the group Cr, Al, Ti, Nb. The influence of process parameters like bias, partial pressure and evaporator current at the coating properties are discussed for different coating types. The generated oxynitride coatings show mechanical properties, oxidation behaviour, thermal stability and tribological properties which are promising for various tribological applications. The most highlighted coating system CrNO is in industrial mass production for piston rings.