+1 and also adding some thoughts towards the larger picture issue or how it impacts licensing. As Idz mentioned, it’s a bit tough to subsidize when there maybe arent as many other revenue streams coming in.
One thing that I’ve been pondering is how to best represent TD work-life within the licensing structure itself. For example if you were to extrapolate professional life from the pricing tiers of softwares you could say something like
Notch: High pricing of pro tier because pro revenue is likely recurring (events/media server rentals), and only a small number of licenses are needed (unlike installations where you need to just drop a license)
Unity: Free unless you need team collaboration, project management integration, or want Unity engineering support, so essentially the story they’re telling is that the “pro scene” has a pretty clear divide between individuals and companies, and all companies will be paying 125$ for help dealing with collaboration on their team and wanting their PMs to have easier time, and for everyone else, just getting you to use it for free over Unreal is worth it to them.
Unreal: 5% royalty on your games…basically only big companies are going to be paying so they don’t get sued, and as such everything unreal is catered to enterprise usage and AAA-sized companies, which you can see by their “pricing” page being this jargon-y mouthful: unrealengine.com/en-US/release But they also own fortnite…so…
Max MSP: Cheap perpetual license until next big version, even cheaper yearly subscription, and even cheaper monthly sub. Yearly new release (I think?). So essentially they want a high volume of individual artists to be able to afford a license for their systems and they want those artists to have no reason to not upgrade every year. At that point they don’t care about “installations” per se as I believe Max runtime is built into the regular Max now (as opposed to being separate) so you don’t need a license per machine.
Obviously my reading into license models is tinted with my experiences and bias, but I think there’s also truth in that. If we then apply the same thought process to Derivative’s license model it’s a bit trickier but it feels like it represents the pro scene decently. It has the free version for getting started and bringing in artists, but it’s so permissive that similarly to unity I can imagine the number of people that just use that on projects. Then there’s the commercial license which is in that price range of individual pro range of 600$ a year, which is pretty reasonable considering the amount of updates, but I wish the 600$ were per person not per computer (or dongles were free), because the reality is most devs have multiple computers. Then there’s the big jump up to pro with a few features that real top-end folks and enterprises might need such as personalized support and frame sync and etc.
The only alternative I’d suggest to simplify our representation of the work-life of a TD pro would be to have something similar to a “dev/performance license” which is similar to commercial now which is targeted at anyone who has a license for working on their computers and then their work is just using that single license on performance machines or similar. Then a “deploy license” which is maybe more than “jsut one license” but is a package of licenses combined with personalized support + maybe built to .exe functionality and this would basically be companies and enterprises buying this to roll out installations, and you would price it at the point where the loss from licenses since you can build to exe is built in.
A very long +1 haha