*SPOILER-FREE* post on user personas in Game of Thrones: user motivations, frustrations and goals from around the 7 Kingdoms
The user experience gods over at the Nielsen Norman Group remind us to design products around people, rather than teaching people how to interact with products. Why? Because it’s the only way we can ensure that our products answer the needs of our users.
With our user research complete and our data collected, what’s the next step in the design process? Creating user personas is a great way to sort through the data and define meaningful user archetypes.
Why you should be creating user personas
User persona development helps us bridge the gap between the company and its users by allowing us to measure true user behavior and figure out what their end goals might be. It drives design decisions by allowing software teams to get a deeper understanding of the users who will be using the systems they are building. But while they might be useful, creating user personas isn’t always fun and games.
Until now. We’re making user personas more accessible and more memorable for UXers the best way we know how – with Game of Thrones! With Winter now officially here, we’ve hand-picked our favorite 6 characters from the GoT cast and created user personas, complete with user motivations, goals and frustrations. Check them out below! Which Game of Thrones character is your user persona?
6 user personas from Game of Thrones
Jon Snow, House Stark
Status: de facto King of House Stark
Archetype: dashing hero
Personality: humble, loyal, brave
Motivations: fear, honor, peace
Goals: remove the threat of the White Walkers from the North, incidentally become King of the Iron Throne
Frustrations: he knows nothing, he’s not a true Stark
Bio: Jon has a clear moral compass and a true sense of honor, having learned from a series of difficult life events. He has a legitimate claim to the Iron Throne and is a great leader. He is also one of the only people to take the White Walker threat seriously.
Sansa Stark, House Stark
Status: Princess of House Stark
Archetype: Disney princess turned kickass heroine
Personality: compassionate, guarded, pragmatic
Motivations: fear, society, comfort, loyalty
Goals: find her family, defend her home
Frustrations: needs to marry for power not for love
Bio: Sansa goes from being a spoilt, cowardly young girl in the first season to a strong and kind leading lady in Game of Thrones season 6. From a young age, she is taught to put her House first, even ahead of love. She has seen several of her family members murdered. She hopes to find the surviving members.
Cersei Lannister, House Lannister
Status: Queen of House Lannister
Archetype: the evil queen
Personality: power-hungry, antagonistic, narcissistic
Motivations: power, incentive
Goals: remain Queen of the Iron Throne, rule the 7 kingdoms of Westeros south of the Wall
Frustrations: the death of her family, intervention by the Sept of Baelor
Bio: Cersei is the tyrannical ruler of the 7 kingdoms of Westeros. She will stop at nothing to ensure victory for House Lannister, including plotting to kill her own kin. After harsh treatment from the Faith of the Seven, she shows no mercy to anyone who gets in her way.
Tyrion Lannister, House Lannister
Status: Hand of the Queen to Daenerys I
Archetype: the ultimate survivor
Personality: cunning, kind, bright
Motivations: incentive, society
Goals: serve and advise Queen Daenerys
Frustrations: ignorant people, his evil sister Queen Cersei
Bio: Tyrion has been through a lot as a dwarf in a time when size and strength are hugely respected. After a series of unfortunate events, including killing his lover and then his father for a trick involving his lover, he becomes a broken man and is content to die. He regains his will to live as the Hand of Queen Daenerys.
Petyr ‘Littlefinger’ Baelish, House Arryn
Status: Lord of Harrenhal and Lord Protector of the Vale
Archetype: the psychopath
Personality: manipulative, scheming, creepy
Motivations: revenge, power, incentive
Goals: rule the 7 kingdoms of Westeros south of the Wall with Sansa Stark as his queen
Frustrations: resents treatment by Tully family, hopelessly in love with Sansa’s dead mother Catelyn Stark
Bio: Littlefinger served as the Master of Coin to Robert and later Joffrey Baratheon’s small council. Since then, he has served anyone who can help him get ahead. He currently serves as Lord Protector of the Vale, and hopes to seduce Sansa (who reminds him of her dead mother) and get his hands on the Iron Throne.
Daenerys Targaryen, House Targaryen
Status: Queen of the Andals, the Rhoynar, and the First Men, Lady Regnant of the Seven Kingdoms, Protector of the Realm, Khaleesi of the Great Grass Sea, Breaker of Chains, Mother of Dragons, and Queen of Meereen
Archetype: the Dragon Queen
Personality: fierce, ambitious, empathetic
Motivations: power, peace, incentive, honor
Goals: raise support to retake the Iron Throne, conquer the 7 kingdoms of Westeros south of the Wall
Frustrations: multiple assassination attempts throughout the Game of Thrones episodes, banishment from her kingdom
Bio: Daenerys is an incredibly determined female protagonist in Game of Thrones, proving her courage countless times throughout the series. She has spent years trying to retake the Iron Throne and is now finally on her way back to Westeros for one last attempt.