Dota 2 Hero Snapfire Breakdown

by in Dota 2 | Dec, 9th 2019

Let’s do a somewhat quick Snapfire breakdown to see what the latest addition to Dota 2’s ever-growing support pool brings to the table. She might not seem all that dangerous, but appearances can be deceiving.

The most recent Outlanders update (also known as patch 7.23) shook things up quite a bit. Perhaps that’s even an understatement. The game as we know it changed in many new and unexpected ways.

Fortunately, most of them are immensely positive. Such a big slew of adjustments (and a metric ton of new neutral items) ushered in a different kind of meta. It’ll take a couple of weeks before we can fully assess what happened and how it’ll affect things (both casual as well as competitive play) going forward.

But the patch itself didn’t just bring ample balance changes. It marked the release of two highly fascinating and unique heroes: Snapfire and Void Spirit. Let’s go over their strengths, weaknesses and assess their current power level now.

Before we go any deeper into the nitty-gritty, keep in mind that Valve is releasing frequent micro-patches to balance things out. The numbers listed below could change. Both heroes were relatively underpowered upon release but have seen numerous subsequent buffs and nerfs. As of right now, they’re both potent picks and offer a lot in most facets of play.

So, let’s start with our Snapfire breakdown first!

If you’ve queued up over the last 10 days, chances are you’ve already seen your fair share of Snapfire in many different lanes and roles. First, Snapfire brings a lot to the table, and she does so in a somewhat deceptive manner. You get the notion that she doesn’t pack a punch, but such an illusion only lasts up until you start trading with her.

Her E “Lil’ Shredder” quickly deletes a good chunk of your health bar. She can follow up with her Q “Scatterblast” as well (or vice versa), if the need arises.

Finally, her design enables and empowers her damage and utility. You can invest in the latter and still be a potent damage dealer. Because of this, many players opt to play her in the mid lane. She’s finding way too much success in a role she was never designed to fill.

Despite this, she’s fun to play and is a unique character in the vast and rich Dota 2 world. The wait sure was long, but it was well worth it.

Snapfire Breakdown | Ability Kit

Q: “Scatterblast” — Snapfire fires her gun which damages and slows enemy targets in a cone. Opponents caught at point-blank range will take additional 50% damage. The damage numbers are nice (80/150/220/290; 140/210/280/350 if upgraded in her Talent tree) but it’s the 100%, one-second slow that’s perhaps the best part, and it’s what allows her to chain with a fair bit of damage from her E.

But because the slow doesn’t increase upon leveling, it’s best to just put a single point into “Scatterblast” and use it as is.

Finally, you upgrade the ability to have a three-second disarm (level 25 Talent) as if the potent slow wasn’t enough.

W: “Firesnap Cookie” — Snapfire gives a cookie to either Mortimer (her pet) or to an ally hero, which causes them to jump a short distance (450 at the time of this writing). Upon landing, the unit that leaped will stun and damage all enemies who find themselves in the “landing zone.”

The stun, when maxed out, lasts for 2.5 seconds, which is quite an impressive duration. Now, granted, it’s not easy to land, but it’s also fairly linear by design. Finally, if you opt to upgrade the right Talent, this cookie can also restore 250 HP to either Snapfire or an ally, so you can have a bit of sustain as well.

Landing a good “cookie” takes some getting used to, but once you get the hang of it, you’ll be able to utilize it many different ways (escapes, engages, team fighting, and so on).

E: “Lil’ Shredder” — This is Snapfire’s most potent damaging ability in lane. When activated, Snapfire rapidly fires six fixed-damage shots. If you manage to land the full slew of attacks on a single target you’ll dish out an immense amount of damage. In total, you can deal up to 240/330/420/510 damage to a single target, and you can proc the ability on enemy towers as well.

R: “Mortimer Kisses” — The big one, the coup de grâce. Snapfire’s Mortimer launches a barrage of globs over a six-second duration. These globs then cause impact damage, after which they become fiery pits that slow and apply a burn effect. Once activated, Snapfire cannot move, and every subsequent left click will make Mortimer spit out a new glob.

This is a mind-blowing ultimate in every regard. It has a huge range. Each glob deals a lot of damage (200/300/400), they apply a potent burn (50/75/100), and slow for 25% (or 50% if you choose the right Talent). These globs can heavily influence the outcome of a team fight and they can be used to clear waves from afar with incredible ease. If you land an excellent ultimate as Snapfire during a five-on-five teamfight, you can single-handedly sway the fight in your team’s favor.

But that’s just half of the equation. Upon reaching level 25, you can upgrade your ultimate by picking the right Talent and thus double the number of globs Mortimer can launch (from 8 to 16).

Eight are more than enough to leave a mark. Sixteen, however, is just mind-blowing.

Snapfire Breakdown | Talents

Whenever we talk talents, there’s always a fair bit of subjectivity involved. And, quite frankly, it’s also highly dependent on the game you’re playing, as you’ll want to adapt on the fly.

  • Level 10: +20 Movement Speed or +250 Health
  • Level 15: +60 “Scatterblast Damage” (Q) or “Firesnap Cookie” (W) restores 250 Health
  • Level 20: +25 “Mortimer Kisses” (R) Movement Speed Slow or “Lil’ Shredder” Uses Your Attack Damage
  • Level 25: +8 “Mortimer Kisses” Launched or “Scatterblast” Applies 3s Disarm

Most people opt for bonus HP on level 10, cookie HP restore on level 15, a stronger “Lil’ Shredder” on level 20, and additional ultimate globs on level 25, although this varies from player to player (and playstyle to playstyle).

Snapfire Breakdown | Item Builds

Most players opt to build utility items on Snapfire. Items like Rod of Atos, Force Staff, Eul’s Scepter of Divinity and Hurricane Pike are all frequent purchases. Some players go for Mjollnir, Desolator and Daedalus. Those three are a fantastic mix if you’re looking to carry and dish out a ton of damage. As for boots, Arcane Boots stand out as the No. 1 pick. Phase Boots and Guardian Greaves come in as second and third, respectively.

Overall, there’s a lot of versatility when it comes to itemizing Snapfire, and most of it boils down to personal preference, in-game role and playstyle.

A Change in (Support) Scenery

Because patch 7.23 ushered in a different kind of support meta (blurring the lines between positions four and five), it’s hard to slot Snapfire into any one single role. She’s best as either roaming support or a babysitter, but how one can utilize her immense strengths are varied.

Snapfire also has a metric ton of damage built into her kit (along with a fair bit of utility as well). She doesn’t seem overly dependent on the team comp. Her damage output pairs nicely with an aggressive playstyle. If played correctly, the odds of attaining success skyrocket immediately.

Overall, whether you think Snapfire is currently overpowered doesn’t diminish her unique presence in the game. If her current power level remains a problem, we can expect a swift set of nerfs sooner rather than later.


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