DevelopmentHoward Scott Warsaw, the programmer of E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial, only had six weeks from July 23, 1982 to program the game and ready it for a September 1 release date.
ReceptionAtari produced 5 million E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial cartridges. Most of the units that were sold were returned, and eventually Atari dumped the millions of useless copies still on hand into a New Mexico landfill.
On the 1st of December 1982, after it became clear that Atari would never sell the six million cartridges it had manufactured, executives announced that they were cutting their '82 revenue forecasts from a 50% increase over '81 levels to a meager 15%. In the end, the price of Warner (owners of Atari) stock dropped almost a third from 52 to 35. It was so bad Atari President Ray Kassar unloaded 5000 of his shares before announcing the cuts to the public.
Contributed by Gerauchertes (9) on Aug 01, 2003. [revised by : Patrick Bregger (98690)]. -- edit trivia