This is one of those ideas that came up a lot over the years: “Wouldn’t it be fun to dig up the Atari landfill in New Mexico?” I heard it at 1UP. We talked about it at Polygon. And as I learned doing this story, there were a bunch of others interested like Discovery Channel. But it wasn’t easy to pull off. So when Fuel Entertainment and a group of partners managed to do it, I went along for the ride and put together a story on the hurdles they had to clear.

Then Polygon’s production team went to town. I figured it would be fun to simulate the dig in the margin, so as you scroll down the digger chips away and finds what the team found at the dig. And the production guys made it work beautifully. Their solution kind of reminds me of an old Tomy handheld game where a plastic car moves over the screen below it (Digital Derby Auto Raceway — thanks @WhimsicalPhil).

Art: Tyson Whiting