E.T. Cartridge Hunt Comes To a Halt

E.T. Cartridge Hunt Comes To a Halt

E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial box art

The hunt for the famed burial site of all those awful Atari E.T. cartridges has been brought to a halt by environmental regulators.

Among gamers, it is a place of legend: A secret graveyard, where Atari went to die. Back in 1982, Atari released a game based on the hit Steven Spielberg film E.T. that was so execrable it was forced to bury it - literally, so the story goes, somewhere in New Mexico.

But nothing stays buried forever, and last year two documentary film crews announced plans to seek out the long-lost landfill and dig up the stash. Filming on one of them was slated to start earlier this year, but now the whole thing has ground to a halt over state environmental regulations. A "waste excavation plan" submitted in February was found to be lacking in necessary detail and was thus rejected by New Mexico's Sold Waste Bureau, which "noted many items that needed to addressed, included or clarified before the Bureau could approve the plan."

"No one is allowed to dig until the WEP is approved by the [Solid Waste and Ground Water Bureau]," New Mexico Environment Department spokesman Jim Winchester told the Alamogordo Daily News. "A WEP must be approved in advance of any excavation, and that includes even the city of Alamogordo."

The excavation may proceed if the two companies involved, Fuel Entertainment and Lightbox Interactive, are able to satisfy regulators, but as of March 17 neither had submitted an updated plan. Lightbox Producer Catherine Pasciak did say, however, that the company still plans to make its film once it receives proper approval.

Source: Alamogordo News

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The environmental agency obviously doesn't want them uncovering the burial site of these cartridges because upon unearthing it all those around who see the cartridges will have their faces melt off ala Raiders of the Lost Ark...
Yeah...that's it...certainly it is right? :P

I can just picture a big candle-lit table with people in robes sitting around it chanting about how the secret must be kept safe.

Neronium:
The environmental agency obviously doesn't want them uncovering the burial site of these cartridges because upon unearthing it all those around who see the cartridges will have their faces melt off ala Raiders of the Lost Ark...
Yeah...that's it...certainly it is right? :P

I think even from my place far away from New Mexico I'll feel the chill of the dead reawakening. I played that damned game extensively, and it deserves every bit of hate and scorn thrown at it. Should these foolish people disturb the grave of the Unnameable One, I've no doubt it'll return to life, an inhuman mountain of garbage that will consume us all.

It sounds like a government conspiracy is actually being beneficial to humanity for once. I have no doubt that the bureaucracy will keep them locked in a web of paperwork in order to protect this secret. Or at least, until they can safely relocate the danger to a new, mysterious crypt. After all, it's been several decades, and those mystic containment seals don't hold forever.

So do archeologists also have to file plans with the Solid Waste Bureau before going out and looking for ancient burial sites?

If not, then what's the time-gap limit that makes such bureaucracy irrelevant?

Well they're digging in a landfill so precautions have to be made so that they don't dig up and leave exposed something that could be harmful, and you always need permission from the land's owner if you want to excavate anywhere in the U.S. In the case of government land there are a lot of agencies that come into play, even if it's just some Montana wasteland you want to dig for Dinosaurs in.

MinionJoe:
So do archeologists also have to file plans with the Solid Waste Bureau before going out and looking for ancient burial sites?

If not, then what's the time-gap limit that makes such bureaucracy irrelevant?

Only Archeologists looking to explore New Mexico.

Next up: Indianna Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Meth Pipe.

I remember hearing about this the whole time I was stationed at Holloman AFB (which is in Alamogordo) and so many rumors as to the location of the landfill that the cartridges are buried in, and All I could say is whenever I brought it up, I'd get shifty eyed looks from the residents as though it was something no one wanted to mention, as though it was a long lost secret where to speak of it aloud would reawaken the dark gods again.....

anthony87:
I can just picture a big candle-lit table with people in robes sitting around it chanting about how the secret must be kept safe.

You have a very interesting interpretation of what goes on behind closed doors in the New Mexico bureaucracy.

anthony87:
I can just picture a big candle-lit table with people in robes sitting around it chanting about how the secret must be kept safe.

OT: Of course, there is a logical explanation.

You see, the people who know where the site is have always used it as a place of power. Unwittingly, those who dumped the cartridges failed to realize...that E.T. bears some resemblance to Tsathoggua. In the same manner that Cthulhu idols are a representative of the lord of R'lyeh, so too would a huge amount of Atari games bearing that alien face be a focal point of power leading to N'Kai, where Tsathoggua dwells. Though the Old One is not the worst of his kind, he is still terrible, and cultists do not give up power easily. Therefore, they will protect New Mexico's secret to the hilt.

I don't get the hate against this game, man. Nobody seems to have much of a problem with fetch quests these days. What did people want back then? E.T wasn't exactly a warrior and I don't think the kid knows karate.

Racecarlock:
I don't get the hate against this game, man. Nobody seems to have much of a problem with fetch quests these days. What did people want back then? E.T wasn't exactly a warrior and I don't think the kid knows karate.

Short answer: Even by Atari standards, the game was awful. Games like Breakout, Asteroids, and Yars' Revenge can hold up on their own merits even today. ET on the other paw, was just plain bad.

Kieve:

Racecarlock:
I don't get the hate against this game, man. Nobody seems to have much of a problem with fetch quests these days. What did people want back then? E.T wasn't exactly a warrior and I don't think the kid knows karate.

Short answer: Even by Atari standards, the game was awful. Games like Breakout, Asteroids, and Yars' Revenge can hold up on their own merits even today. ET on the other paw, was just plain bad.

I. I never actually thought the game could have been that bad, but it is! It actually is. Amazing. How does a game like this get published? Did no one stop to ask "How does one beat the game? And furthermore, what is it that you're supposed to do?"

Ironman126:
I. I never actually thought the game could have been that bad, but it is! It actually is. Amazing. How does a game like this get published? Did no one stop to ask "How does one beat the game? And furthermore, what is it that you're supposed to do?"

The same kind of thinking that drove THQ into oblivion 30 years later. The more than things change...

Perhaps while the companies are waiting on their permits, they can go on a side quest to find out where the Swordquest prizes are.

 

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