Microsoft to release nearly 1 million abandoned Xbox Gamertags on Wednesday

gamer-tagIt's about damn time!  Microsoft has been kind enough to let Xbox gamers change their Gamertag (for a small fee), but they have never bothered to release the old abandoned (original) Xbox Gamertags… until now.

Microsoft, beginning this Wednesday, May 18th, will be releasing nearly 1 million formerly used Gamertags into the wild for Xbox 360 and Xbox One gamers to claim once again. Those looking to pick up a new tag can do so from their consoles, the Xbox App or Xbox.com.  Now if only Sony would allow users just to change their PSN ID.

See the Xbox Wire announcement here or below.

No other console gives you the ability to customize your virtual representation and make your experience more social with easy-to-change Gamertags.  Many of the best and most desirable Gamertags were unavailable…until now.  We’ve listened to your feedback and once again Team Xbox is excited to announce the release of a large number of previously-unavailable Gamertags!

Starting on Wednesday, May 18th @ 11:00AM PST, we will begin releasing nearly one million Gamertags to our valued Xbox Live Gold customers with active subscriptions and at least 1 year of cumulative Xbox Live Gold tenure.  These Gamertags will be released over a 24-hour period, to give our fans in various countries an equal chance to get one.

So, where did all these previously-unavailable Gamertags come from?  These Gamertags are from the original Xbox era, the same source of Gamertags we used in our 2011 release.  These accounts never migrated to Xbox 360 and as a result they have been inactive for quite some time.

While it may be challenging to find the exact Gamertag you want, keep trying, as there are many great Gamertags that will be released.  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
  • Some of the greatest inventions of all time

Access to these newly-released Gamertags will be available on Xbox.com, which is the most convenient way to make a Gamertag change.  Customers can also access these Gamertags within the Xbox App on Windows 10 and on the Xbox One console.  Xbox 360 customers will need to use Xbox.com, the Xbox App on Windows 10, or an Xbox One console to participate given that access to these newly-released Gamertags is not available from an Xbox 360 console. To change your Gamertag on the web, please visit https://account.xbox.com/changegamertag.

To determine the tenure of your Xbox Live Gold account, view your Profile on an Xbox One console or on the Xbox App on Windows 10.

Changing your Gamertag won’t impact your Gamerscore, Achievements, or your Friends list. However, it may make you the envy of your friends and fellow gamers.

Remember, we rely on your feedback to bring the features you want to Xbox Live, so keep the suggestions coming!

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