Hey, remember when Atari buried thousands of copies of E.T. in the desert? Remember when that became a massive urban legend? Remember when copies of the game were then unearthed in a brilliant publicity stunt for Microsoft? Now the story has another twist: the Alamogordo City Council has agreed to auction off 800 copies of the game on EBay. Soon you will be able to own a piece of wacky gaming history.
Currently the games are being looked after by the Tularosa Basin Historical Society and are located at the New Mexico Museum of Space History in Alamogordo.
The plan is to keep around 500 copies at the Museum which, let's be honest, is probably still more copies of E.T. than any museum really ever needs -- why not cash in while the story is still hot. Apparently they've already had some interest from the Museum of Rome, which plays host to a section dedicated to video games.
I think I'd pay a decent amount of money for an unburied copy of E.T.. The game really is representative of a pivotal moment in gaming history. It's the moment console gaming died, before being revived by Nintendo. The fact that the game was later exhumed is almost a symbolic testament to the way video games have survived over the following decades. E.T. is still here. You can buy it. You can pay money for the thing that no-one would pay money for once upon a time.
I wonder how much they'll go for?