If you're in the market for a filthy yet arguably notable copy of the Atari 2600 debacle known as E.T., you may want to plan a trip to the New Mexico Museum of Space History.

One month ago, Microsoft funded a dig in the Southwestern state in search of a fabled cache of E.T. cartridges reportedly dumped by Atari in the wake of the game's disastrous launch. After boring through 30 feet of human refuse, 1,300 of the cartridges were recovered. 700 of those historical artifacts will now be sold to the public, according to a decision by the Alamogordo City Commission.

"We have been working with the space museum for curation, both for displaying and selling the games; they are now artifacts," Mayor Susie Galea told Polygon. "There are 700 that we can sell."

It's currently unknown what price these unearthed cartridges will fetch, as Galea claims the city is still working to have the 700 pieces appraised. Once that's complete, they'll be handed over to the museum, complete with certificate of authenticity, just in case any enterprising New Mexicans hope to strike it rich by retrieving the more than a half a million E.T. cartridges that remain buried.
[Image: Microsoft]

This article was originally published on Joystiq.