When the Xbox One S was announced at E3 2016, it was easy to get excited and look forward to some HDR gaming. The new console adds 4K support, as well as introducing HDR gaming, which all sounds very nice.

However, the Xbox One S is something of an interim measure. No one was really expecting the reveal of Project Scorpio, the device that will take the Xbox crown.

Here's everything you need to know about Project Scorpio, the Xbox of the future. 

Project Scorpio is the codename for Microsoft's next Xbox console. In an uncommon move, the 2017 device was teased at E3 2016. Normally future plans are closely guarded secrets, but in this instance, the future Xbox is being announced.

Phil Spencer said at the E3 reveal: "we're announcing Project Scorpio today to give our developers and partners the ability to take advantage of that capability now."

This isn't the first we've heard of Project Scorpio, however. Those who follow games industry news will know that the Scorpio name was being bandied around alongside leaking news of the new slimmer Xbox One S - and many of the leaked details appear to be have now been confirmed by Microsoft.

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The Xbox team doesn't talk in too much detail about the innards of devices and we suspect that things are a long way from final for Project Scorpio.

The focus has been the 6 teraflops of GPU power so far, mentioned a number of times on stage at E3 2016, along with the "most powerful console" positioning.

The main crux of Project Scorpio is delivering uncompromised 4K gaming. That's a different position to the Xbox One S, which is pitched in to support 4K Ultra HD sources like Netflix and Amazon Instant Video, and Ultra HD Blu-ray. While Xbox One S will support HDR (high dynamic range), it's not about increasing the resolution of gaming output.

So that's where Project Scorpio will really have to leverage its hardware, with talk about fully uncompressed pixels and 60Hz frame rates, for incredibly smooth, but very detailed, visuals. There's talk of 8 CPU cores and over 320GBps memory bandwidth, too, although that's about it for the official line so far.

In the announcement of Project Scorpio, there was also a fair talk of VR. With Bethesda already showing off plans for Fallout in VR - which we've had a chance to demo - another aim of Project Scorpio is to deliver high-fidelity VR gaming.

Where the official announcement ends, the rumours continue, with sources talking to Kotaku saying that Scorpio will be "technically capable of supporting Oculus." Partnering with an established name in VR (at least as established as you can get in a brand new sector) would be something of a coup for Xbox, bringing that hardware to the console and reducing the need for a PC. However, there's nothing official to suggest this has happened.

Still, VR is certainly on the roadmap and the Xbox team is sending out the message that Project Scorpio is going to offer an uncompromised VR experience for gaming.

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At this stage it's too early to know what gaming plans there are for Project Scorpio.

While all the talk has been about enhancing the experience, there's the strong message that Scorpio is part of the Xbox family and those games and accessories for the Xbox One and Xbox One S will work with Project Scorpio too.

The message is that "no one gets left behind", so as Scorpio pushes things forwards, Team Xbox is keen to ensure that the humble Xbox One gamer doesn't feel they have to go out an buy a new console to keep up. Equally, those who do get Scorpio will still be using the same services as they do now and be part of the same Xbox Live community.

It's perhaps exciting to be able to put a date on a future release. Project Scorpio is slated for a December 2017 launch, right in time for "the holiday season".

Of course that's some way off - so you can go and buy that Xbox One S you secretly still want - and enjoy it for many months before Scorpio becomes a tangible product. Of course, there's no price yet, and with over a year of development, we're sure there's going to be a lot more to learn about the future of Xbox.

These are exciting times.