Jaffe is originally from Birmingham, Alabama and currently resides in San Diego, California. Jaffe graduated from Alabama's Mountain Brook High School, located in Mountain Brook, AL, a suburb of Birmingham. Jaffe then attended the University of Southern California in Los Angeles. He applied to their film school, but was never admitted. After a few years pursuing his dream of directing movies, he turned to game design.
Jaffe is well known for directing the Twisted Metal series and God of War. Jaffe's Twisted Metal: Black and God of War have both ranked into IGN's "Top 25 PS2 Games of All Time", with Twisted Metal: Black in ninth place and God of War winning first place as IGN's best PS2 game of all time. In 2007, Jaffe left SCEA to found Eat Sleep Play. The studio signed a multi-year deal with Sony to create games exclusively for PlayStation platforms.
Jaffe is somewhat unique amongst game developers in how directly he interfaces with the public, known for conducting interviews, regularly posting developer blogs, and communicating regularly through his own personal blog - where he also discusses things outside of the game industry, such as his personal politics. Jaffe has developed a reputation for candidness and liberal use of profanity when expressing his opinions.