Management at Atari is really to lunch. Orders for more game cartridges than there are existing consoles is outright stupid. When news broke that 700,000 game cartridges (20 semitrailer loads) were crushed and burred in Arizona the shit really hit the fan.
Atari’s tendency to port arcade games for its home console had led to some of its most commercially successful games, including the port of its own coin-op Asteroids, and the licensed versions of Taito’s Space Invaders and Namco’s Pac-Man. When the latter game received its official port to the Atari 2600, Atari was confident that sales figures would be high, and manufactured 12 million cartridges—despite having sold only around 10 million Atari 2600 consoles
Atari was bought by Warner Communications back in 1976 for some $28 million. Now Atari is estimated to be worth $2 billion in 1982. In 1982 Atari held about 80% of the video game console market. Atari, Inc. would go on to lose $536 million in 1983.