User Types Hexad

The Gamification User Types Hexad is a model created by Andrzej Marczewski to help designers understand the type of people that use gameful systems. They represent different types of motivations and interaction styles of users. However, they should not be used as a simple user categorization because each user typically displays a combination of motivations in varying degrees.

This is an excerpt of Marczewski’s description of the user types:

  • Socialisers are motivated by Relatedness. They want to interact with others and create social connections.
  • Free Spirits are motivated by Autonomy and self-expression. They want to create and explore.
  • Achievers are motivated by Mastery. They are looking to learn new things and improve themselves. They want challenges to overcome.
  • Philanthropists are motivated by Purpose and Meaning. This group are altruistic, wanting to give to other people and enrich the lives of others in some way with no expectation of reward.
  • Players are motivated by Rewards. They will do what is needed of them to collect rewards from a system. They are in it for themselves.
  • Disruptors are motivated by Change. In general, they want to disrupt your system, either directly or through other users to force positive or negative change.

For a longer description of the user types, please see Marczewski’s original publication.

Take the test!

Would you like to know your user types profile? Take the Hexad user types test!

Help our research!

We are looking for volunteers to take part in a new study to find out the preferences of a person when using gameful applications or playing games. We are especially interested in learning how individual preferences vary per country or cultural background. The goal is to learn how to design better digital applications and games.

If you decide to volunteer, you will be asked to complete a 25-minute online survey. Survey questions focus on your preferences while playing games or using gameful digital applications, as well as personality and demographic questions.

Please note that you must be 16 years or older and familiar with digital games to participate in this study. In appreciation for your time, you can enter your name into a draw for one of three USD $50 international Visa gift cards.

This research is conducted by the HCI Games Group. This study has been reviewed by and received ethics clearance through a University of Waterloo Research Ethics Committee. However, the final decision about participation is yours.

Click here to participate online.


The Gamification user types Hexad was originally published by Andrzej Marczewski:

The following publications present our user types research focused on the creation and validation of a measurement scale:

Empirical Validation of the Gamification User Types Hexad Scale in English and Spanish

Gustavo F. Tondello, Alberto Mora, Andrzej Marczewski, and Lennart E. Nacke. 2019. Empirical Validation of the Gamification User Types Hexad Scale in English and Spanish. In International Journal of Human-Computer Studies 127: 95-111. Elsevier. doi:10.1016/j.ijhcs.2018.10.002

The Gamification User Types Hexad Scale

Gustavo F. Tondello, Rina R. Wehbe, Lisa Diamond, Marc Busch, Andrzej Marczewski, and Lennart E. Nacke. 2016. The Gamification User Types Hexad Scale. In Proceedings of the 2016 Annual Symposium on Computer-Human Interaction in Play – CHI PLAY ’16. Austin, TX, USA. ACM. doi:10.1145/2967934.2968082

The HEXAD Gamification User Types Questionnaire : Background and Development Process

Lisa Diamond, Gustavo F. Tondello, Andrzej Marczewski, Lennart E. Nacke, and Manfred Tscheligi. 2015. The HEXAD Gamification User Types Questionnaire : Background and Development Process. In Workshop on Personalization in Serious and Persuasive Games and Gamified Interactions. London, UK. ACM.

Use the scale in your research

Please see these summarized instructions to use the Hexad scale in your research project. The scale and instructions are available in several languages:

For a Turkish version of the scale, see Özcan Erkan Akgün and Murat Topal. 2018. The Turkish Adaptation Study of the Gamification User Types Hexad Scale. International Journal of Assessment Tools in Education 5: 3, 389-402. doi:10.21449/ijate.379139

The Gamification user types Hexad is licenced under a CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 licence by Andrzej Marczewski. For the scale or other published research articles, please check the licences of each publisher (Elsevier or ACM).