Meet Deckard Cain Elder

The real Deckard CainA lovely story (if true) has surfaced on reddit from a young guy called Deckard Cain Elder. Back, I would assume in the first part of 1996 (Diablo 1 released end 1996), PCGamer ran a competition to suggest a name for a character in Blizzard’s up and coming ARPG, Diablo. Deckard’s father, a big Blizzard fan, decided to submit his son’s name.  In retrospect the name seems quite surreal to us as it fits so perfectly in a fantasy world now and doesn’t sound ‘real wordly’ but Deckard explains how he got his name:

My first name comes from the Harrison Ford’s character in the movie Blade Runner, my middle name is my mother’s maiden name, and my last name is my fathers family name.

Months went by but eventually a package arrived with a letter from DiabloWikiBill  Roper informing Mr Cain that he had won and his son’s name was to be given to Tristram’s town elder.

A long yellow envelope, a copy of Diablo, a black hat with Blizzard in blue printed on the front, a very large Diablo T-shirt, and a blue statue of Diablo that stand a little over a foot tall. Inside the envelope was a letter from Bill Roper, the producer of Diablo, that explained that I had been chosen for the drawing prize. (I will have an imgur link to pictures of the Diablo statue, me holding the letter, and the letter up close for you to read.) The letter basically explained that the prize for being chosen in this drawing, was to have your name in the game. I honestly feel that, because of my unique name, Blizzard saw my name on the postcard and thought it suited the character they were looking to name. But either way, it’s seriously cool. So if you ever wondered how Blizzard named Deckard Cain, you now know.

He also received a specially commissioned statue of Diablo and a copy of the game.  Deckard doesn’t mention if he plays Diablo or if his Father still does but either way he thinks it’s cool and so he should, it’s quite the honour.

We know that Blizzard were open to naming characters after community members as myself and Flux have NPCs named after us in Diablo 2 which is nice because there’s not a hope in hell of that happening in Diablo 3. Thanks fmulder, Tom Beers and Kajan for mailing in with the story.

Update: Bashiok has confirmed this is a true story.

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24 thoughts on “Meet Deckard Cain Elder

  1. Forgive me if it was a joke that went over my head (lack of body language/tone sometimes requires a 😛 for dummies like me to get it) but, I recall reading that Flux named himself after the D2 Act III Merc. It would be pretty awesome if D2 got names from Flux and Elly instead of the other way around.
    Also, he mentioned that he was a big fan of the Diablo games…Must be surreal (and WEIRD) to hear people saying Deckard Cain all the time!

  2. In the original post, Elly wrote, “Deckard doesn’t mention if he plays Diablo or if his Father still does.”

    I just wanted to point out that Deckard Cain Elder actually stated that the Diablo series is “among my favorite games.” Additionally, he wrote, “I actually just started a new Paladin on Diablo 2 a couple of days ago.” Regarding Diablo 3, he said, “I have unfortunately not played Diablo III. And I don’t have any special privileges either.”


  3. Could you provide a link to the Bashiok statement, Elly (or anyone else who has it)? I’d like to share it with a friend who claimed that this guy was a troll – but can’t find the statement of Bashiok in the Bluetracker 🙂

  4. How cool would it be if the game were prophecy and that kid grows up and moves to a town with a cathedral and a drunk named Farnham…

  5. lol don’t let that idiot from India hear about this or he’ll start saying again he has to destroy the soulstones himself, and he’s already locked up in the nuthouse. imagine what they’d do to him NOW that Deckard Cain is real

  6. Not to get too deep on this one but the kid’s name is Deckard Elder Cain.  In D1 the NPC’s hover title was “Cain the Elder” and his name was Deckard Cain.

    Think about that. Blizzard must have had the idea for an old scholarly sage type dude… and then the winner’s middle name was “Elder?” How perfect is that? Did he win largely because of that fact?

    Imagine if the kid had been named “Deckard Cain Jr.?”  Or “Deckard Younger Cain?” Would he still have won? Would Blizzard have altered their concept of the NPC to make him like, a child prodigy? Would Wirt have become “Deckard Younger?”

    This is like discovering string theory: so many possibilities in the bubble universes!

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