How you could finally nab the Xbox Gamertag you’ve always wanted

Microsoft has announced almost one million dormant Gamertags from the original Xbox era will be recycled and offered to current members this week.

In a post on the Major Nelson blog, Larry Hyrb revealed the haul of unwanted usernames will be released over a 24-hour period from Wednesday May 18 at 7pm UK time.

“These Gamertags are from accounts abandoned 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,” he wrote.

The categories include:

  •     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

“While it may be challenging to find the exact Gamertag you want, keep trying, as there are many great Gamertags that will be released,” Hyrb wrote.

See also: Best Xbox Live games 2016

The head of Xbox Live said they’ll be available from Xbox.com (and via the Xbox app on Windows 10 and Xbox One) to folks who’ve had an active account for over a year.

The staggered release will give users around the world chance to potentially snap up a Gamertag that has long eluded them.