Blizzard Entertainment lost a gold master disk of its best-seller Starcraft, and its whereabouts were unknown — until now.
32-year-old Hector Solorzano, a game collector from New Jersey, purchased a $44 Blizzard game lot containing titles from classic Blizzard franchises like Diablo, Warcraft, and, of course, Starcraft.
Solorzano found something strange in the lot though: a golden disc, which was not pictured in the pictures for the game lot on eBay. The disk came with the label “Starcraft: Gold Master Source Code.”
At the beginning of April, he posted this picture on Instagram.
DualShockers spoke to Solorzano about finding the disc:
“When I got the box, I was mostly interested to see if any of the codes had been used or not, but then I saw the gold disc and glanced at it, didn’t pay much mind to it until I saw that it had ‘STARCRAFT’ printed on it. As I looked closely it said ‘Gold Master Source Code,’ and I said WHAT THE FUCK? I set it aside thinking wow that’s pretty cool, let’s see what else is in here. I also found a copy of Heroes of Might and Magic IV Elite Edition. I looked closely at it and rubbed my eyes because there was a label attached that said ‘Property of Blizzard Entertainment.’ That was when I actually realized this shit is legit.”
Blizzard got into contact with Solorzano through a Reddit post. A lawyer for the company later called him and asked if he would kindly give the disc back. Solorzano agreed. He knew it was the right thing to do.
“It was disappointing as a collector to find something that literally you dream of and have to give it up just like that, but i knew it was the right thing to do.”
He also received offers from outside of Blizzard as well.
“I got about 100 messages from people asking me to dump an iso of the source code, and a few offers of upwards of $2,000 for the disc.”
As a reward for the return of the disk, Blizzard provided Solorzano with free copies of multiple titles on Battle.net as well as $250 in credit on their shop. Not long after that Solorzano received a phone call from a Blizzard employee. They asked him if he had ever heard of BlizzCon.
“I said well, yeah of course but it’s impossible for me to go, I live in the East Coast, and the badges are always sold out before you can refresh the page lol.”
The Blizzard employee offered Solorzano an all expenses paid trip to BlizzCon, and even invited Solorzano out to drinks.
“I thanked him like 20 times, didn’t really know what to say. But every time I thanked him he said, ‘no no no, thank you.’ He said he would like to buy me a beer.”
But that’s not all. The employee said something was going to arrive shortly in his mail too, and Solorzano posted the package he received from Blizzard on Imgur.
It’s been almost twenty years since this Starcraft gold master disk was lost. But now it’s back in the hands of the rightful owners at Blizzard.
You can see more pictures of the rare disc below, as well as the tag Solorzano found on his new copy of Heroes of Might and Magic IV that were in the lot.
Starcraft: Remastered is due out this Summer. You can download the original Starcraft for free now on Battle.net.
[Reporting: Noah Buttner]