Celsys has announced version 2.0 of Clip Studio Paint, its popular digital illustration and animation software, alongside plans to move to a monthly subscription for updates to the service when it launches. It has left some longtime fans who praised it for its one-time purchase model, very betrayed.
An announcement on the Clip Studio website states that “beginning in 2023, the current version 1 (the one-time purchase, perpetual version for Windows/macOS, hereinafter ‘Version 1.x’), offered as a download and physical version, will no longer be available. longer receive free feature updates.”
This has subsequently outraged members of the artist community, who previously announced the service as a fantastic one-time purchase alternative to software-as-a-service applications like Adobe Photoshop, effectively adopting a similar business model that Clip Studio Paint fans were trying. to avoid in the first place.
The announcement was accompanied by a confusing flowchart detailing the benefits of the upgrade packages on offer. Those who maintain a perpetual license for version 1.x will not receive additional updates from the release of version 2.0 in 2023. If you purchase a perpetual license for version 2.0, you will get access to the base version, but it will not contain any updates. additional updates from 2.1.0.
As a result of these changes, consumers may feel compelled to accept the third option, a subscription for existing users called an “Upgrade Pass” valid for one year, which will update their existing 1.x version to 2.0 and remain so. update with additional upgrades and new features as they are released.
When Adobe similarly moved applications like Photoshop and Illustrator to a cloud-based software-as-a-service model in 2012, those who couldn’t afford (or didn’t want to pay) for a rolling monthly or annual release sought new, more affordable alternatives.
Clip Studio Paint Pro quickly rose in popularity thanks to a one-time purchase price of $49.99, while a more professional version of the software with features for comic artists and animators was available for $219.
A customizable monthly subscription model that lets you customize the features and number of devices needed has been available for some time now for 99 cents a month, with all three versions of the app getting free monthly updates and additional features. Clip Studio is now used for a wide range of skill levels from hobbyists to professional artists, although it should be noted that it is not considered industry standard software.
Clip Studio’s subscription mode has to be the worst stab in the back of the digital art community I’ve seen in a long time. Paying a one-time fee was the BIGGEST selling point.
— Lauren Walsh @ ECCC Q09 & ENNIE AWARD WINNER!! (@LaurenWalshArt) August 22, 2022
On social media, artists expressed feelings of betrayal about the new pricing structure. Many argue that the single-purchase business model has much of its appeal, as they didn’t want to be stuck paying for a monthly or annual subscription as they would with Adobe’s software suite. Those outraged by the decision recommend a similar digital artwork app, Krita, as an alternative.
Friendly reminder that @Krita_Painting is and will forever be free and open source. It is one of the few digital art tools owned and powered by the community itself.
Let’s continue building a tool for/by artists that is accessible, customizable, powerful and fun.
— Emmet O’Neill (@emmetoneill) August 22, 2022
Prices for the Upgrade Pass and the standalone version 2.0 software have not yet been disclosed, but the announcement seeks to reassure existing customers that “Update Passes will be sold at a lower price than monthly usage plans.” New customers can sign up for a monthly subscription without having Clip Studio Paint version 1.x.
The brand did state that version 2 and above will have a separate perpetual license from version 1.x, so anyone still using version 1.x can continue to do so as long as their system continues to support it. At the time of writing, it is still possible to purchase and own the current version of the software, with Clip Studio Paint stating, “We will also provide free stability updates for major bugs or errors caused by the operating system or specific devices, until next year and beyond the transition to version 2.0.”