(Capcom's primary storyline)
Hoffman was a victim of Lucas Baker.
Hoffman was forced to play Lucas' sadistic games after being captured, being forced to play blackjack against Clancy Jarvis, another victim.
Initially, both men compete to keep their fingers from being cut off by a small guillotine. Hoffman ends up losing all of his. Briefly succumbing to the shock of the loss of his fingers, Hoffman is able to regain consciousness in time for the next stage of the game, where Lucas introduces Trump Cards to help players get a better edge, as well as upping the punishment to electric shock.
In the end, Clancy wins and Hoffman is electrocuted as a "consolation prize." Although Clancy is able to remain conscious, Hoffman is left unconscious. Despite Clancy's pleas to be released for "winning," Lucas proceeds to animate Hoffman's body with strings to continue the game; the stake for this round being the distance of a saw that will reach the players. In the end, Lucas, using Hoffman's body pulls out a "Desperation" trump card, which increased the stakes a hundredfold and would prevent Clancy from drawing any new cards, but Clancy is able to win by doubling the last card Hoffman received, thereby causing him to go over 21. With Clancy's victory, the saw begins moving to Hoffman, who is able to briefly regain consciousness, before being put down permanently by the saw. Lucas later congratulates Clancy's victory by deciding to let him go and play another game.
Throughout the match against Clancy, Hoffman will mention his wife and a daughter named Melissa.
Hoffman is encountered as an "opponent" in the 21 scenario during all game modes. He has several "variants", each with unique trump cards and strategies; two of them, "Undead Hoffman" and "Molded Hoffman", appear as "bosses" in Survival and Survival+.
Hoffman Variant 1 and 4
The first enemy in Survival. His appearance is similar to Hoffman's, but with tally marks on the bag. Variant 4 gets a few more trump cards and plays slightly more strategically than Variant 1.
Unique trump card(s): None
Commonly used cards: One-Up, Draw Card+
Hoffman Variant 2
The second enemy in Survival. His bag has bloody hand prints on it.
Unique trump card(s): Happiness, Desire, Mind Shift
- Happiness: Both players draw one trump card.
- Desire: Your opponent's bet is increased by half the number of trump cards they are holding while this card is on the table.
- Mind Shift: Your opponent loses half of their trump cards at the end of the round. This card is removed if the opponent uses two trump cards in a round.
Commonly used cards: Happiness
Hoffman Variant 3
The third enemy in Survival. His bag has barbed wire marks on it.
Unique trump card(s): Shield Assault, Go For 17
- Shield Assault: Remove 3 Shield-type cards from your side of the table and increase your opponent's bet by 3 while this card is on the table. This card is only drawn when Hoffman draws three Shield cards in a row.
- Go For 17: The closest to 17 wins the round while this card is on the table. This replaces any other "Go For" cards currently on the table.
Commonly used cards: Shield
The last enemy in Survival, this version of Hoffman appears to have transformed into a basic Molded enemy. His body is covered in mold, and a gaping mouth protrudes from the bag, replacing Hoffman's normal soundbites with the growls and hisses of a Molded. Despite this, he's still capable of playing 21 with Clancy without attempting to physically maul him.
Unique trump card(s): Curse, Conjure
- Curse: Discard a trump card at random and force your opponent to draw the highest number on the deck.
- Conjure: Draw three trump cards. Your bet is increased by one while this is on the table.
Commonly used cards: None
The final enemy in Survival+, this variant has numerous knives and scissors embedded in his head. He can still speak coherently, unlike Molded Hoffman, but his voice is significantly deeper than other Hoffman variants. Being the final boss of Survival+, this enemy has the best luck out of all of them, almost always getting a high number, if not a 21. He will also use his unique trump cards the most, just to really ensure you have the least amount of luck possible, in return.
Unique trump card(s): Oblivion, Dead Silence
- Oblivion: Cancels this round, and begins a new round instead.
- Dead Silence: Your opponent cannot draw cards, even via trump card effects, while this is card on the table.
Commonly used card(s): Ultimate Draw, Two-Up+
Mr. Big Head
A rare variant that appears at random. While it sounds like and has the same body as Hoffman, he wears a large gray mask resembling a cartoon mascot with a missing right eye. His signature trump card Escape allows him to "flee" if he loses a round while it is on the table, making him extremely difficult to defeat conventionally. If the trump card is used, the entire match will be reset regardless of progression. Due to this, the round will not count to your enemies defeated, so it is imperative you destroy the card consistently or just use Two-Up, Two-Up+ or enough Perfect Draw+ trumps to put him into a death bet.
Unique trump cards(s): Escape
- Escape: Provided this card is still on the table, you run for your life at the end of the round.
Commonly used cards: None
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