May 19, 2023
March & April 2023 Dev Update
The Soft Launch of Sipher Odyssey is getting closer and closer, and we continue to work around the clock to reach this major milestone.
Get ready for an action-packed Development Update as we share our progress for March and April 2023. Enjoy!
- GAME DEV UPDATES
- CHARACTER INTROS
- BOSS CUTSCENES
- BOSS CUTSCENES — ANIMATIONS
- SPECTACULAR LOOT BONANZA!
- UPGRADING SIPHERIA’S NAVIGATION
- EMBRACE DIVINE FAVORS
- BOOST SELECTION VFX
- EMPOWER YOUR EQUIPMENT & HEROES
- FORGE YOUR SUPPLIES
- HAIL THE QUEEN OF BONES
- FACE THE BOSS OF SERA
- DYNAMITES & DOOM
- CHARACTER COSMETICS
- INTRODUCING THE ATHER ELITE BUNDLE!
- CLOSE IN FOR THE KILL!
- EPIC AND AMAZING!
- DAWN OF A NEW ERA IN SIPHERIAN WARFARE
- ANIMATED WEAPON COSMETICS
- SPECIAL WEAPON: ATOMPUNK EDITION
- LIGHTNING WHIPS
- POLISHING PLAYER LOBBY
- MORE COSMETICS!
- FLEXING IN STYLE WITH THIS DESIGN!
- FEEL THE POWER OF THE SIPHER
- DIVE DEEP INTO THE LORE
- MESSAGE FROM OUR GAME PUBLISHING DIRECTOR
- MESSAGE FROM OUR COMMUNITY MANAGER
- EXPECTED TIMELINE: CLOSED BETA, PLAYTEST, AND SOFT LAUNCH
- INTERNAL RELEASE NOTES
- NOTABLE COMPANY MILESTONES
- HAPPY WOMEN’S DAY
- IT'S 𝞹 DAY
- HAPPY EASTER
- ATHER LABS UNPLUGGED
- DEEP DIVE INTO AUDIO MAKING FOR GAMES
- AI APPLICATIONS IN MUSIC PRODUCTION
- NEW WEBSITE DOMAIN
- GAME DEVS BE LIKE
- BRING THE VOICE TALENTS OUT!
- MEET THE GRANDMASTER!
- GENERAL STUDIO UPDATES
- ATHERX ECOSYSTEM
- BRAND NEW ATHER ATLAS
- ATHER LABS CAREERS
- NEW AND IMPROVED SIPHER ATLAS
- NEKO DUTCH AUCTION REWARDS UPDATE
- SIPHERIAN TALES - TABULA RASA PART III
- SIPHER ODYSSEY ROADMAP — STATUS UPDATE
- FINAL WORDS FROM OUR WORLD ARCHITECT
- FOUNDER’S NOTE
- ATHER LABS DEVELOPMENT UPDATE
- CHECK OUT OUR RECENT DEV UPDATES
GAME DEV UPDATES
Whoa, slow down there champ! Before you go sprinting into the depths of the content below, why not enjoy a little warm-up first? Check out our latest gameplay footage and get your gaming muscles flexing. Happy gaming! 🎮🕹️
The lethal elegance of the INU CANIS, where deadly blades and captivating style converge
Ambush from the shadows and strike unseen with the NEKO PHASEWALKER
INDOMITABLE & UNBREAKABLE
The BURU MECHA defies devastation!
The mighty mechanical beast, a colossal brute with a devastating stomp that shakes the very foundations of Zendor.
Brace yourself for impact, for when this mechanical beast charges, there's no stopping its rampage.
Danger looms as this boss seeks revenge for his fallen comrade.
BOSS CUTSCENES — ANIMATIONS
SPECTACULAR LOOT BONANZA!
Embark on your Sipherian Adventure and discover bountiful resources!
BLUEPRINTS possess the secrets to unlocking formidable gear and potent consumables through crafting.
BYTE, RAM, and ROM packs are in-game currencies acquired through quests or the shop, unlocking boundless possibilities for the player!
UPGRADING SIPHERIA’S NAVIGATION
UNFOLD YOUR DESTINY!
Step into SIPHERIA & Embark on your Journey!
EMBRACE DIVINE FAVORS
BURN your enemies
ELECTRIFY your victims
Bestow DIVINE JUDGEMENT on those who wish you harm!
The choice is yours!
BOOST SELECTION VFX
We've spruced up the VFX for selecting your boosts, making it easier for you to spot your preferred boost with its distinct colors!
EMPOWER YOUR EQUIPMENT & HEROES
A showcase of dazzling game feature icons featuring Capsules, Melee, Guns, and Vessels!
FORGE YOUR SUPPLIES
Behold more game feature icons highlighting the exceptional artistry of our team: Consumables, Salvage, Materials, and Craft Gears.
HAIL THE QUEEN OF BONES
Amidst the fiery depths of Zendor, Queen Eden reigns supreme from her throne, commanding the very essence of darkness itself.
FACE THE BOSS OF SERA
Remain vigilant as you venture into SERA!
Buddy Bodhi will unleash a brutal barrage of bombs on whoever walks into his territory
DYNAMITES & DOOM
X marks the ̶s̶p̶o̶t̶ doom!
KEEP YOUR DISTANCE!
And strike with calculated intent
The seductive allure of freedom can be irresistible, drawing us towards our deepest desires and most daring dreams.
However, the pursuit of freedom is not without risk, and the consequences of our actions are often unknown until the future unfolds.
Step into the neon-lit streets of tomorrow with this futuristic cyberpunk outfit.
INTRODUCING THE ATHER ELITE BUNDLE!
Show off in style with the limited edition Ather Elite Bundle, exclusively available for early players!
Packed with Ather Labs-themed avatars and skins, this bundle is your ticket to becoming a true Sipher elite.
Rally your allies to victory and elevate your fandom for Ather Labs by hoisting our dedicated hero flags!
Flex your Ather Labs pride and dominate the competition in style with exclusive weapon skins!
Get ready to showcase your fiery flair with exclusive Ather Labs cosmetics.
These outfits are so hot that you’re sure to turn heads (especially firefighters).
CLOSE IN FOR THE KILL!
EPIC AND AMAZING!
DAWN OF A NEW ERA IN SIPHERIAN WARFARE
ANIMATED WEAPON COSMETICS
ENHANCE YOUR ARMORY!
Bring your customizations to a whole new level
Whip your way through battles and let the sparks fly as you show everyone the true power of love and lightning.
SPECIAL WEAPON: ATOMPUNK EDITION
Channeling the essence of a bygone era, the iron fist weapon embodies a retro-futuristic aesthetic, drawing inspiration from the captivating elements of Atompunk.
Whatever the occasion, the NEKO has her customized festive whips ready to crack!
POLISHING PLAYER LOBBY
Hey hey, check it out, our Art Department is on a roll! They're polishing things up day by day, all to make sure our players are blown away right from the moment they step into the lobby!
It's so exciting, I could watch them work all day long!
Arm yourselves with the finest gear and invite your companions, for the challenges ahead will be filled with excitement!
FLEXING IN STYLE WITH THIS DESIGN!
Deck out your character in the finest threads and show the world your unique style.
FEEL THE POWER OF THE SIPHER
Choose your fighter and explore which skills you can utilize in battle.
DIVE DEEP INTO THE LORE
Discover the rich foundations of the different worlds in Sipheria.
MESSAGE FROM OUR GAME PUBLISHING DIRECTOR
Dear Sipher Community,
Our journey to develop an exceptional multiplayer mobile game has been both challenging and exhilarating. We've crafted many features, including a procedural weapons system, an extensive equipment system, engaging missions & quests, an intricate inventory system, and many upcoming features.
Besides that, optimizing the game for seamless performance on various mobile devices has been a top priority. Our team has dedicated significant efforts to address overheating, crashes, and low FPS issues, providing uninterrupted and fluid gameplay, while keeping a good graphic quality.
Developing a multiplayer mobile game of this magnitude is a complex challenge, but our dedication drives us forward.
We value your support and collaboration, which enriches our development progress.
Just bear with us a bit longer; we're giving it our all to wrap up and launch the game as quickly as we can. We know the wait is tough, but we promise you, it'll be worth it! We're trying as fast as we can to ensure this game will bring you a good experience.
Thank you for your unwavering support.
GAME PUBLISHING DIRECTOR
MESSAGE FROM OUR COMMUNITY MANAGER
We have exciting news for our esteemed supporters… our upcoming Sipher Odyssey Closed Beta! In the next few weeks, our Community Support Team will identify the most dedicated and enthusiastic Sipherians to participate in the Closed Beta. These chosen individuals will be organized into groups and play on a rotational basis, this way everyone will have a chance to experience the game and provide feedback. Rather than going straight to an Open Playtest, we've moved forward with this approach due to several key considerations:
1 - Our current development approach involves performing necessary optimizations in tandem with feature development. Ideally, all features would be complete before optimization, but this "in-tandem approach" allows us to meet our launch timeline. However, it is crucial to acknowledge that there is still significant optimization and polishing work to do. Thus, we have decided to adopt a Closed Beta format which gives us more control over the testing, as more optimizations are made, more community members will be invited to beta test.
2 - We aim to enhance our ability to effectively analyze and utilize the feedback received. By selecting smaller groups of participants, we enable more focused interactions between our team and the testers. This approach allows for deeper engagement, personalized support, and a higher level of attention to individual experiences.
Each playtest cycle might focus on a different element, week 1 might focus on gameplay, and week 2 might focus on smoothness, by running the playtest this way we can hyper-focus the feedback and be much more effective with our optimizations. This valuable insight will play a crucial role in further refining and improving our game before the Soft Launch.
3 - Ultimately, this cohesive and interactive setting will contribute to a more fruitful and impactful Closed Beta that empowers testers to shape an exceptional gaming experience. The details of the closed Beta will be Announced by Drac soon, so keep an eye out for that.
Last but not least, there will be a narrated version where I go more in-depth about the boost system, inventory, and crafting, so check out for that if you want some heads up before joining the playtest! See you all soon.
EXPECTED TIMELINE: CLOSED BETA, PLAYTEST, AND SOFT LAUNCH
With the introduction of the Closed Beta, the launch of the Open Beta (Playtest & Soft Launch) will have a Release Window rather than a fixed launch date. This Release Window will run from Mid-June to Late-July.
This adjustment allows us to carefully consider and incorporate the feedback received during the Closed Beta, ensuring necessary improvements and optimizing the game promptly. While we understand that this news may cause some disappointment, we firmly believe that investing additional time in smaller test groups and optimizing our game will result in a more favorable first impression for players during Soft Launch!
INTERNAL RELEASE NOTES
Dear Gaming Community,
We hope you're enjoying our Action RPG. We wanted to provide you with a comprehensive update on some of the performance enhancements we've been working on:
- Frame Rate (FPS): We've made significant strides in achieving a stable 60 FPS on most high-end and many mid-range devices. However, we are aware of frame rate drops in resource-intensive areas, and we're actively refining our mechanics to improve this.
- GPU Usage: We've successfully reduced GPU usage on both iOS and Android without compromising visual quality. We aim to continue optimizing for high frame rates while maintaining the highest standards of visual excellence.
- CPU Usage: Due to the intense nature of an Action RPG, our game does demand more CPU resources than typical applications. We've identified several areas for improvement and are working diligently to optimize them.
- Art: Our art team is committed to delivering high-quality, detailed graphics. We've learned a lot throughout the production process and are striving to find the perfect balance between visual appeal and performance.
- Unreal Engine and UObject: We've encountered some challenges with the Unreal Engine, particularly around UObject usage for mobile. However, we're undertaking a series of structural reorganizations to keep UObject at an optimal level.
- Visual Effects: We understand the importance of maintaining visual excitement without overburdening your device's resources. Our team is working on innovative solutions to create impressive visual effects that are both unique and resource-efficient.
- Memory: We've identified and resolved a memory leak issue that was leading to higher than necessary memory consumption.
- Temperature: We're aware that our game can cause some devices to heat up quickly. As we continue to optimize our game, this issue should become less frequent and less intense.
- Server and Client Communication: Our next objective is to optimize server and client communication. We're in the early stages, but we've already implemented a solid infrastructure, ready for online gaming.
We sincerely appreciate your patience and support as we continue to improve and enhance your gaming experience. Stay tuned for further updates and as always, happy gaming!
SIPHER ODYSSEY TEAM
NOTABLE COMPANY MILESTONES
HAPPY WOMEN’S DAY
Celebrating the amazing women of Ather Labs. It was a fun-filled day at the office as they experienced a scented candle-making workshop.
IT'S 𝞹 DAY
3.14 marks the annual Pi Day tradition and Ather Labs got a tasty treat baked fresh by Chef Inu.
In true Sipherian fashion, the Easter Egg Hunt event was celebrated with our Discord community. It was harder than ever but was a blast to experience with everyone. Congratulations to all the winners!
ATHER LABS UNPLUGGED
A new content series launched to keep the community updated on what’s cookin’ inside Ather Labs and showcase the amazing work happening behind the scenes.
DEEP DIVE INTO AUDIO MAKING FOR GAMES
An insightful workshop by Mr. Dang Le (Audio Director) and Mr. Phuoc Nguyen "FunkG" (Sound Engineer) of the Audio Team. Audio plays a big role in video games and the team got a preview of what it takes to produce amazing sound design.
AI APPLICATIONS IN MUSIC PRODUCTION
Ather Labs welcomed a special guest speaker, Mr. Nguyen Hoang Bao Da to talk about “AI Applications in Music Production”. Using AI efficiently is something the team is implementing across departments so this was truly valuable.
NEW WEBSITE DOMAIN
Explore the World of Sipheria in our new home!
GAME DEVS BE LIKE
Some of the “highlights” of our game development journey for Sipher Odyssey.
BRING THE VOICE TALENTS OUT!
A behind-the-scenes look at our voice actor getting a little too into his role.
MEET THE GRANDMASTER!
Introducing The Grandmaster!
Her job is to make sure everyone follows Kusoka's rules and trains new SIPHERs to fight against The Aberrations.
GENERAL STUDIO UPDATES
Are you ready for a challenge? Join AtherX and start earning AtherXclusive rewards with our XP and Nanochips.
BRAND NEW ATHER ATLAS
Our new & improved Ather Atlas is LIVE — and with it, a host of new sections for you to explore.
Psssst — you’re reading this Development Update in our new Atlas, in case you haven’t noticed! 🤭
Our free weekly curated report, covering top news about gaming, AI, blockchain, metaverse, and more!
Check it out here https://atlas.atherlabs.com/atherxplorer, and don’t forget to Subscribe — it’s FREE!
Discover how we implement cutting-edge tech in our products straight from our team.
Check it out here https://atlas.atherlabs.com/atherxperiment!
ATHER LABS CAREERS
Learn more about our company, what we're doing, and find our latest job listings!
Check it out at https://careers.atherlabs.com/
NEW AND IMPROVED SIPHER ATLAS
Everything you need to know about the world of Sipheria. Revamped with a fresh new look showcasing the latest info on Sipher gameplay mechanics & lore.
Check it out at https://atlas.atherlabs.com/sipher
NEKO DUTCH AUCTION REWARDS UPDATE
THE CLAIMING DEADLINE HAS BEEN EXTENDED TO MAY 30, 2023!
FREE SHIPPING FOR ALL & REFUNDS FOR PREVIOUSLY PAID ORDERS
- To claim your merchandise and sculptures, please follow the instructions in this article. Note that you do not need to pay for shipping, so you can ignore step 7: https://medium.com/playsipher/how-to-redeem-sculptures-and-merchandise-891a54c2dc33
- The new deadline for claiming these items is May 30, 2023
- This is the final claim window. Any unclaimed Sculptures and Merchandise will be used by the SIPHER team for marketing and promotional purposes. Please make sure you claim before the deadline!
- Refunds will be issued if you previously claimed & paid for shipping costs. Expect an email with an update in the next few weeks.
- Import and Duty fees are not covered.
- Shipping costs will be covered for each eligible order only once. We are not responsible for any damages to goods during transport, and orders that need to be re-shipped will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.
SIPHERIAN TALES - TABULA RASA PART III
Witness the emotional end to this thrilling 3-part series of the Sipherian Tales.
SIPHER ODYSSEY ROADMAP — STATUS UPDATE
FINAL WORDS FROM OUR WORLD ARCHITECT
The past few months have been challenging for us at Ather Labs. We faced multiple obstacles when integrating code as we merged several big features completed in parallel into the same core build. Some of us jokingly and painfully refer to this as the "big bang" moment, where many problems occur. However, we persevered and expended a lot of time and resources to resolve these issues.
Moreover, our progress with mobile optimization encountered various device-specific challenges, particularly with Androids. This required us to allocate a lot of resources from our QA and Technical Engineers, as well as our Artists, to determine root causes and permanent solutions.
Despite these challenges, we continue to push forward daily. We are currently pulling repeated 9-9-6 weeks in our studios, and our internal playtest builds are becoming more stable. As a result, we can now focus more on game balancing, ensuring that the stats we crunched in our spreadsheets are right. We are also validating our multiplayer networking server tech to ensure nice pings for players in similar regions. For one sample stat, we aim for a steady sub-100ms ping to ensure good co-op gameplay at the soft launch.
As the soft launch approaches, there is still a lot of work to be done inside and around the game. This includes refactoring code, polishing UI, tweaking visual and audio feedback cues, balancing the speed and difficulty of our Boss Encounters, and refining our go-to-market strategy for bringing this game to a large and global mobile-first audience. All of these tasks are crucial to the success of our IP, and they require resources, dedication, and time. We are psyched to see Sipher Odyssey in the hands of every player but, we also want to ensure that it is in its finest form. Unfortunately, we are still some way from achieving that.
Having invested hours into Mihoyo's latest mobile smash hit, Honkai Star Rail, which comes from a well-reputed and thousands-strong studio, has further energized us to strive harder to polish our own game. We expect that the next few weeks and months will be pivotal for us to deliver all of the above and more.
Our entire team believes that the extra time is necessary and will benefit the game. We hope that our supporters understand and appreciate this too.
I wish you all great health, and please stay tuned for more from Ather Labs!
Thank you for reading this edition of our
ATHER LABS DEVELOPMENT UPDATE
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Well, well, well, look who's got some eagle eyes! You've uncovered an Easter egg, my friend - congratulations! Not only did you make it through all the juicy content in this dev update, but you've also earned yourself a spot on our exclusive playtest list. But hold up, we can't just let any name in here - we need to know yours, dude! So come on, don't be shy - spill the beans, and let's get this ready!
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CHECK OUT OUR RECENT DEV UPDATES
All Hands On Deck
2023 is escalating quickly as we gear up for the upcoming Soft Launch of Sipher Odyssey. We’re excited to share our progress with you & showcase all the hard work of our team. Enjoy!
Ending 2022 with a BANG
We are finishing the year strong with loaded updates on game development, exciting studio accomplishments, and some well-deserved holiday celebrations.
Sep & Oct 2022 Dev Update
Check out all the latest updates on company achievements, products launched, and major game design & development updates for SIPHER ODYSSEY. Enjoy!