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Unearthed E.T. cartridges fetch more than $100,000

Atari's secret stash has made a killing on eBay with almost 900 cartridges sold

The stash of E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial cartridges unearthed in the US last year has generated more than $100,000 in sales.

The New Mexico site where Atari dumped copies of perhaps its most famous failure was excavated in April 2014, the final proof that one of gaming's most famous myths was, in fact, true.

Since then, the man who made it happen, Joe Lewandowski, has sold 881 cartridges to buyers in the United States and beyond. In total, the combined sales amounted to just below $107,000. The highest price paid for one of the cartridges was $1,535.

The city of Alamogordo has received $65,000 from the sales, a figure that drew praise from city commissioner Nadia Sikes.

"I just want to take a moment to thank Joe Lewandowski for all the hard work. I wouldn't consider myself a real nay-sayer of what was going to transpire with the sale of the games but I have to say I am so impressed with what you've done," Sikes said to the Alamogordo Daily News. .

"Under no circumstances did I ever think you were going to sell over $60,000 worth of games."

There are now 297 cartridges remaining, following the donation of 23 to various museums and 100 to the company that made a documentary about the process.

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Matthew Handrahan avatar
Matthew Handrahan: Matthew Handrahan joined GamesIndustry in 2011, bringing long-form feature-writing experience to the team as well as a deep understanding of the video game development business. He previously spent more than five years at award-winning magazine gamesTM.
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