SPOILER ALERT! Please be forewarned that reading from this point forward is going into material covered in the book Edge of Destiny and from an impromptu Q&A with Lore Master Jeff Grubb!
“Snaff might be the greatest Asura in history and it’s not because he is the smartest but because he is personable and treats others with respect.” – Jeff Grubb, PAX Prime on Sunday.
Hello and Welcome everyone, BigCat72 here with a new post for you today on a subject that has been on my mind for the past month! Snaff, the Greatest Asura! I didn’t feel I had enough information on the subject before to write out what I wanted to write, but thanks to being at PAX Prime and being able to speak with Jeff Grubb in a pseudo 1 on 1 Q & A, I feel confident with the information I can bring to you today! I will start out by going over what I do know of him from the book and then move into the information that I later learned while having a pleasant discussion with Jeff Grubb.
So here we go, I hope you enjoy it as much as I enjoy writing it.
Snaff the Golemancer, was one of the rarest Asura to have ever come about, his genius was deeply rooted in techniques and technologies that to this day, no one understands. Yet his amazing mind was not the entire reason that he was so well known, or to why he is respected today. Snaff was a one of a kind Asura, he was kind hearted, treated other equally, with respect. He cherished relationships, especially the special one he had with his fellow genius of an apprentice, Zojja, who we will learn more about as Guild Wars 2 evolves. Snaff was a genius in Golemancy, creating golems with heads, that can be controlled by the use of thought alone. Here is a small excerpt from the book Edge of Destiny with a dialogue between Snaff, Zojja and Eir in Snaffs Laboratory.
“And she’ll have quite a ferocious look when she gets into combat.” said Snaff.
“Into combat?” Eir asked.
Snaff nodded. “She’s a war machine.”
“Why not? Wars shouldn’t be fought with flesh and blood. Somebody might get hurt. I’m hoping to revolutionize war—make it the province of golems without people involved at all. Let them bash each other’s brains out. The nation with the best golems wins.” He gestured behind him to another stone table where a second metal warrior lay. “I’m what you call a philanthropist.”
Eir laughed. “We pronounce it profiteer.” She slung the mallet at her waist and wandered between the tables, surveying the golems.
“They’re a special design of mine,” Snaff said. “Cephalolithopathic.”
Zojja broke in, “It means ‘psychic blockheads.’”
Snaff smiled patiently. “You see, these golems are designed to be fitted with massive basalt heads, which provide resonance points that channel energy into these powerstones”—he lifted what looked like a golden laurel and pointed to the small powerstones embedded around it—”which infuse the signals through the cranium of the wearer, allowing remote experience of somatic sense and reciprocal control of motor functions.”
Zojja sighed. “You can control the golem with your mind.”
“Precisely,” Snaff said. “Very experimental. No one else is even close to doing this sort of thing. It’s difficult not to wax poetic about one’s own inventions.” He carried the golden laurel to his apprentice. “Would you be so kind, my dear? After all, it does have your head.”
~ J. Robert King, Edge of Destiny. New York; Pocket Star Books, 2011.
Snaff and Zojja met Eir, while Snaff was looking for an artist to work a huge piece of basalt into the head of Zojja to place atop an 18 foot tall golem. The 3 then teamed up to fight one of Jormag’s champion who has the ability to take control of your mind and use you as its minion. Snaff had found a power stone that kept their brains from being controlled, so with the use of the power stones and the large golems that Snaff had created they almost destroyed the Dragon Jormag’s champion. Sadly though they were defeated and banished from Hoelbrak until they could return with a force great enough to destroy Jormag’s champion. After their defeat, Snaff set about with new plans for a new golem that would be made out of Sandstone that could be crushed down to a pile of sand. Then when you’re ready to battle it can reform with the power of your mind and the crushed power stones imbued in the sand.
Using this sand golem aptly named Sandy the 2 Asura, Dire wolf and Norn were able to defeat the undefeated champions of the Lions Arch gladiator arena Edge of Steel. Sandy was able to scoop his opponents up and defeat them soundly with minimal damage to either party. Again because of Snaff and his genius they were able to form the group of heroes that we will be attempting to bring back together known as Destiny’s Edge. As a krewe the 7 of them (yes the wolf counts as one person HES AS BIG AS YOU AND ME!!!!) were able to take care of the dragon champions for Zhaitan and for Primordus mostly because of Snaff’s genius. Creating ships that were decoys but hid grinders on them, golems controlled by Snaff and Zojja at a safe distance against the undead armies hidden in the seas protecting Zhaitan’s champion. Then because of Snaff’s selflessness they were able to kill Primodus’s champion the Destroyer of Life using an invention created by another Asura who was always one of Snaff’s rivals.
The last bit that I know about Snaff was in his greatest fight, a fight no one had tried, a fight that seems insurmountable, against odds so great that to some it could be called impossible! A fight that took Snaff’s life but almost succeeded, if it wasn’t for a certain human who fell in love with a mesmeric Queen they just might have succeeded. The krewe Destiny’s Edge were off to the Crystal Desert to take on the last Dragon Champion that was left for them to face, Glint who is the original champion of Kralkatorrik. Destiny’s Edge faced Glint who knew of their plans and that her master was soon to awaken changed the krewe’s objective to killing Glints master. The plan was for Glint to preoccupy the Elder dragon long enough for the small Asura to shoot him full of power stones, enough for Snaff to try and take over the great dragon’s mind. No one has ever tried anything like this, the last person to take on an Elder Dragon was the legendary Norn warrior Asgier who was able to successfully take a tooth from the great dragon.
Snaff was able infiltrate the mind of the great dragon, slowing its heart rate, causing him to almost suffocate by keeping the beast form breathing meanwhile the rest of the krewe was fighting furiously to keep the minions of the dragon from killing Snaff, using everything they could. But with one of them gone, the one of them who was most experienced in defense and Guardian like spells it was futile. The waves of minions soon overcame their ability to hold them off and Snaff was killed inside his golem allowing the great Elder Dragon to live on and reap his destruction elsewhere. With the loss of their leader and the loss of their great genius they all split ways. Logan stayed with his Queen. Eir retreated back to her cabin in Holebrak. Zojja took the ashes of her master with her back to her home. Caithe was dumbfounded at the reason everyone was splitting up and still doesn’t get it. Rytlock blames the entire loss on Logan and considers him a brother no longer.
When I asked Jeff Grubb about Snaff he told me that Snaff is the greatest Genius the Asura have ever seen and it was because he wasn’t selfish, he treated others as if they were just as smart as himself and just as fascinating as himself. He said that more information will be released soon about him in a large blog post by one of the great minds working over at ArenaNet, I am very interested in hearing more about him as he is quite possibly “The most interesting man in the Tyria” (I know it’s bad sorry) Jeff later went on to tell me that in this first part of Guild Wars 2 we will not be going to pick up where Snaff and Destiny’s Edge left off in trying to killing Kralkatorrik, we are going after Zhaitan and his undead minions.
Lastly at the closing of the convention I got to ask Jeff Grubb one last question “Do we get to beat the crap out of Logan”
To which Jeff Grubb laughed and said “No, you don’t get to physically beat up Logan” he does have to reflect on what he has done and he beats himself up for what has happened. The same with Rytlock, he has to get over what happened and realize that he had a part in what happened with Logan leaving. Zojja needs to get over the loss of Snaff and realize that there are greater things in the world that she needs to help with. Eir needs to forgive herself because she has been putting all of the blame on herself for the krewe’s failures. Caithe just needs to get a clue, she still has no clue why everyone split up and why they didn’t go back and fight. So she really just needs to get a clue.
PAX was an amazing experience, I loved every minute of it. I got 6, 40 minute demos played during the convention and 2 different PvP matches, 1 while I was even at the ArenaNet studios! Those stories and more to come later! Thank you so much for you time I hope you appreciate this article and as always take it easy.