If any single game was responsible for the great video game crash of 1983 – and the eventual collapse of Atari as the premier gaming company – it was E.T. The Extra Terrestrial. Often considered the worst video game ever made, E.T. was created in a rush, and the finished product bore little resemblance to the beloved movie.
Rumors persisted for years that Atari buried millions of unsold cartridges in a New Mexico landfill. A report from 1983 stated that 14 truckloads of discarded game cartridges were dumped on the site.
Documentary filmmaker Zak Penn captured the excavation process, and while the urban legend was seemingly confirmed, the diggers merely found hundreds of cartridges, not the millions originally reported.