Despite the COVID-19 pandemic preventing thousands of fighters worldwide from perfecting their craft offline, Dead or Alive 6 world champion, Hoodless has extended his identity by leaps and bounds this year: growing his Twitch channel & social media accounts, promoting Dead or Alive players and even helping them get paid through his weekly online tournaments - now he's taking on interviews where tough questions are asked, and he masterfully protects the players that enjoy Dead or Alive, KOEI TECMO & Team NINJA while offering his own truths in the process.
The first half of this Salt Shakers interview is a good background reference of his DOA career, it not only spans many game titles, but incredible stories, International competition and commitment to traveling the world for his game. Taking a few minutes to listen to some of his advice could save you hundreds of dollars if you are just starting tournaments, and he explains how he budgets his journeys in this interview.
As they discussed the controversial Dead or Alive 6 World Championship he dared asked Hoodless the question: "What was the production like for this event?..." at 34:10 in the interview. This was of course a tricky curve ball question with Hoodless being put on the spot with no lead into this question other than the discussion of DOA6WC matches. At first it is reasonable to believe the inquisitor was a curious player with no real knowledge of the series, but as we progress into the interview it becomes quite evident he at least watches Emery Reigns videos from time to time and has a few opinions that he projects in this interview with Hoodless.
Hoodless rated the event a five out ten (after being asked to rate it), but he did critique on the production of it. Team NINJA intended for DOA Festival to be a spectacle that covered everything DOA and gave all players a chance to get involved whether they were a competitor or not. We are all aware that the production aspect of DOA Festival was not great because they tried to do so many things, but there is no questioning that KOEI TECMO paid their players out with huge prize pots and accommodating life-changing trips to Japan. Missing Xcalibur BladeZ get 3-0'ed by Crazy Steady is the match fighters wanted to see, unfortunately KT's production decisions prevented that dream, but the players did not go home empty-handed.
Drax also asked Hoodless about the poor reception of DOA6 and Hoodless did respond by saying it might be incomplete but people are still playing it and supporting it. He also asked Hoodless why there were so many female characters in the game and Hoodless responded with "sex appeal." While sex appeal is indeed a reason for it - the female characters had more interest because they showed more personality and generally have more relatable story sequences. DOA also started out with more male characters but this evolved over time as more players asked for more female characters with a small minority of the fanbase asking for new males.
It's easy to hear that Hoodless tried to make this interview about gameplay, but sexual presentation of the females and DLC questions were the center piece of conversation for Drax after offline experiences were thoroughly discussed in this nearly two hour interview.
Drax was quick to attack DOAs DLC and the pricing of it, but Hoodless reminded him that it does not change the gameplay and in our view it's a donation of interest to our game and to Team NINJA. While the hair rental service was indeed an inexcusable problem, costume DLC helps Team NINJA create other games. Whether or not you think it's good is subjective and not as important as your gameplay focus and of course the future of the series.
While it's unfortunate that these types of conversation are so common in the mainstream media, they have to be carefully addressed and Hoodless executed these interesting interview questions brilliantly.
KOEI TECMO & Dead or Alive 6 have shortcomings, but without doubt they have been good to their players through not only compensation but social media interaction. Even if it's not really the questions anyone wants to hear, Drax did put on a good interview for the attention of the game to the best of his knowledge, but hopefully good news and press are in store for the future of Dead or Alive.