Game News

A Million Old Xbox Live Gamertags Returning to Circulation This Wednesday

by Kyle Hanson


If you are a big Microsoft gamer, then your Xbox Live Gamertag is pretty important. However, with millions of players all vying for the same set of names, it’s easy for you to end up with one that you don’t really like all that much. In many cases the Xbox Live Gamertag that you wanted was already taken by someone else. If this is the situation for you then there’s some good news.

Over a million previously secured Xbox Live Gamertags will be recycled starting Wednesday, May 18th. All of these Gamertags were previously secured by someone on the original Xbox, but never made the transition to the Xbox 360. This is a long enough time that Microsoft has decided to reuse the Gamertags, making them publicly available once again.

“While it may be challenging to find the exact Gamertag you want, keep trying, as there are many great Gamertags that will be released,” reads the announcement from Microsoft. “Although we can’t share the actual list, we can tell you that many of the available Gamertags are in the following categories: Proper Names, pop culture references (Entertainment, sports, gaming), Types of Food, Geography and Travel, Science and Technology, Math and Numbers, Animals and some of the greatest inventions of all time.”

These Gamertags will be freed up throughout the day, starting at 2pm Eastern Time. If the name you want isn’t free at that time, keep checking back, as it may become free some time later. Here is a link where you can change your current Gamertag, or just sign up for a new one on

This isn’t the first time that Xbox Live Gamertags have returned to circulation. The last one happened in 2011, and featured names from the same set that will be freed up this week.

Good luck. And be sure to let us know in the comments what your ideal Gamertag would be, if you could choose anything at all.

- This article was updated on:February 27th, 2018

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