A bit surprised at update cost

First post here and hate that it’s to complain.Hopefully it’s in the right place…
ALL my other asset purchases upgrade for free per their Asset Store rule #9 …now I wake up today to see an update from 3.x to 4.0 that’s going to cost me another $55 to keep using A* Pathfinding…that means with my original purchase price of version 3.x I get the privilege of cumulatively paying more than even the $100 asking price for the “New” product.
I looked at the upgrade page and see a lot of “fixed” and “fixes” etc…and am a bit confused why I am being asked to pay for these fixes when all upgrades for fixes come for free otherwise…a version number change to a whole number does not constitute a significant change…
I can’t afford to pay such a high fee…will support for the 3.x version be dropped and become useless ??


You can of course continue to use your existing package and continue to get support here for free.
I have maintained this package for more than 7 years now (from even before the Asset Store existed) with free upgrades during the whole time. This is a lot longer than most software tools offer free upgrades. 4.0 is a significant update with a lot of new features that I have worked on for the last year. Even seemingly small items like “Improved behaviour of the RichAI movement script.” is pretty much a rewrite of that script.

I will soon release a new 3.x upgrade with a few of the fixes backported from 4.0. Many of them depend on other changes in 4.0 however which makes it hard to backport them, quite a lot of code has been refactored.

You do not have to worry about upgrading and then soon finding that you have to upgrade yet again. As noted previously I have maintained this package for over 7 years with free upgrades and after this one I have no plans for another paid upgrade in the foreseeable future.

If you bought the package during the last 3 months you can upgrade for free (if you did buy it within the last 3 months, but the upgrade was not listed as free previously, check again as I had to tweak some things after the update was approved by the Asset Store staff).

Actually, thinking about it, 3 months is a bit short, isn’t it? I wouldn’t want to have to pay for an upgrade just 3 months after I bought a package. I have changed this to 8 months now which is more reasonable.


Nothing you’ve said is at all unreasonable, and yet I have this feeling of betrayal that I just can’t shake. We bought the Pro version about a year and a half ago despite not really needing any of the Pro features, just to support the product, but we got side-tracked with a multitude of other problems- the absolutely massive letdown of the Morph Character System (both for unreasonable licensing restrictions and horrible technical problems) forcing us into a completely new direction for NPCs in the project after months of work for that, for instance. Other than just making a demo scene to test this out a few months back, we haven’t had an opportunity to use the A* Pathfinding Project at all, and now it’s another $50 just to get updates for when we actually will be using it.

As I said, nothing you’ve stated is at all unreasonable, and yet this is incredibly painful. Just… ugh. Maybe I’m just in a fragile state after the MCS thing, but never getting any usage out of so many of our biggest purchases is… whatever, I’ll get over it eventually. You do good work, unlike those Morph3D jackasses.

Welp…so I guess I will abandon A Pathfinding…waste my original purchase price and look for another solution from a developer who isn’t so greedy…if I paid 100 for the original and now have to pay another 50 for the upgrade that makes 150 for the privilege of being an early adopter…:unamused:
One thing this has taught me…no more buying assets believing free upgrades are the norm …no more buying tools because I think they might be useful in the future…in particular script based assets…
I went through this with Devdog and his paid upgrade (which he later retracted) and not going to waste any more time or money on wishlist items in the future

Same. I bought this to support Aron. I asked him whether a sale is coming. He said no then 2 weeks later a madness sales happens. I tolerate it until this upgrade happened. At least Devdog fixed his problem.
Apex Path + steer is on sales, total cost is barely higher than current Astar.

Sorry about that. However if I said no, then I probably didn’t know it myself at the time. Asset store publishers can sign up for being included in future sales, however the waiting times are usually months or even more than a year. When the Asset Store staff selects an asset for a sale they will inform the publisher around 1 to 4 weeks before the sale is set to start. So we don’t get much opportunity to plan the sales ourselves.

I agree with the statements made by the customers above.

Charging us an additional 50$ when we already paid the 100$ full price is greedy. Especially now that Unity’s new version has been released with dynamic navmeshes and all. This reduces the usefulness of A*PP at the moment, it is more convenient to use a native solution for most people.

I paid the full price to support the developer, now this feels like a slap in the face.

Many addons, sometimes more useful and complicated than this one have free lifetime updates.

What is particularly d*ckmovy about this is the fact that just now the developer has decided to include the update price, if I had known about it, I would have never purchased the addon in the first place.

I ask the developer to reconsider this obviously bad decision.

Well, I don’t really know what to say other than that I feel that the upgrade is justified.
It does take a lot of work to continue to develop an asset, add new features, improve the code quality, update documentation and provide support, and I have done so for 7 years now with a continually growing user base.
As a contrast Unity has made it through 3 paid upgrades in that time (version 3, 4 and 5) and is soon going to release version 6 which is another paid upgrade (though I suppose they want to move everyone to a subscription now which is essentially like upgrades). Paid software updates isn’t something uncommon.

You are right however in that I should have communicated the upgrade more clearly. I should have said earlier that I was planning a paid upgrade some time in 2017.
The purchase page has for several years said that the license will provide free upgrades only for all 3.x versions, but I understand that it is easy to miss.

Following up on what I said earlier in the thread, I have just released version 3.8.9 (https://www.arongranberg.com/astar/download) which includes many backported fixes from version 4. More will likely follow, but it takes some time to backport fixes as a lot of things have been refactored in 4.0, so I haven’t had the time yet.

I respect your work as a developer, your plugin solves a lot of problems, however, I believe this business decision is totally unfair for customers that have supported you by purchasing the product at full price.

I personally just purchased it earlier this year, I didn’t know it was in development for 7 years, nor do I care. I paid 100$ for a script that does something, and now I’m asked to pay 50$ again for, what from my point of view, seems like a minor update that fixes some bad design choices that shouldn’t have been there in the first place.

I totally understand your need to get paid to maintain the software. You could do it in a million ways without alienating your user base. Why don’t you release more products on the asset store? Maybe you can create some example projects like a RTS template that uses the plugin. I would gladly pay for it, as I’m sure would many of your customers.

Comparing a plugin development cycle to the whole platform’s dev cycle is nonsense. I don’t agree with you there.

Overall, I don’t believe that the upgrade should be paid. The documentation was always a bit too thin, it should have been completed a long time ago, there are no video tutorials, only showcases. Compared to Apex for example, you are far behind on this, and they don’t charge as much.

The code for a lot of classes was always a bit spagetti-y and overwhelming, you can get around it, but you often stumble upon some very obscure design choices when you try doing something very specific. We can tolerate this, especially since you are fast to answer emails, however, charging us again for something that was already incomplete is insulting.

I want you to be paid for your work, you deserve it, but not like this, not with shady business practices. Why don’t you open a patreon or kickstarter instead?

Wait. You did? If so you should be eligible for a free update. Have you checked the asset store while being logged in to the same account that you purchased it with?

I’m just writing this using my phone while traveling, so I cannot write a detailed response right now. I just thought that sentence might be good to answer quickly. I will read through the rest carefully when I get home.

Ultimately making existing customers pay initial purchase price + $50 = $150 when new customers get the newest with all the doodads and whistles for $100…just isn’t fair.I’d be upset if I bought a new car Superx.1 for 10K only to see a guy at the next desk buying the newest model Superx.2 for the same or lesser outlay…

I think I will partially agree with some of the sentiment here: paying $50 to upgrade for what to my eyes looks like a refactor with mostly improved gizmos and namespaced scripts seems a bit uh disingenuous? I haven’t upgraded so I cant say with certainty that these things are minor, but just glancing over the changes I don’t really see a compelling reason to upgrade short of a Unity compatibility break. As a customer I shouldn’t really need to care about a product refactor, only about what features I’m actually getting if there’s a paid update.

The price staying the same I can see rubbing people the wrong way the most.

I think a prime example of what I would consider a better model is Opsive and Behaviour Designer. It has almost 40 integrations, all of which are provided for free, but the price of the product has slowly increased over the years. The same with UFPS(which they now own), tons of updates with big features, which have prompted the price to rise. Its just gravy that both have kept those updates free for existing users.

Now they are planning on a total rewrite of UFPS from the ground up, which will be either an upgrade or a new product, but I think that would be warranted. I’m actually excited for what that will bring, even though its still in early stages I already want to pay them money for that update.

I’d have no problem paying for a big update that brings new features, but A*'s features have more or less been the same for a while now. Astar used to be my #1 recommended asset, it was miles ahead of Unity’s built in solution and Apex didn’t exist at the time. Nowadays I’m not sure, its still ahead of Unity but they’ve been doing really useful updates of their own. Apex looks like it offers a genuinely competitive product with a cleaner/friendlier workflow.

I got the new version for free, thanks.

My point still stands though, as @thelebaron have said, the update price is punishing early adopters, it should be the other way around. New users should be charged more as the product gets new features. So upping the price is better than charging for updates.

I agree that the new update feels more like a refactor.

I like this asset, and I like you Aaron as a developer, but I must say that your PR skills are lacking. There are a lot of scammers out there, and a lot of shady developers who try to take advantage of their customers. It is easy to look like them. This whole thing lacked clarity, and got some people angry, myself included, so you need to communicate more, or it may damage your reputation.

I believe you’re on the right path though, you started making video tutorials, which is great, we need more of these.

Good luck.

What !! Please tell how you got the new version for free ?? inquiring minds want to know…

Might make a thread for my circumstances later but I can’t stay quiet & I can’t stop getting angry about this crap your pulling aron.

Bought in 2015 to support you eventually developing proper 2d support hoping the (old & fast) RVO would go 2d too & was not impressed when that disappeared but kept quiet that time. Dumped a lot of time into making a 2d character controller for the grid graph (still in progress).

You finally get some real 2d value into the project (AFTER the unity team did their 2d navigation update btw) & you pull this crap on me? My supposedly deprecated version is nagging me to update to version 4 (which it can’t do obviously) and I had to fix 14 editor errors with Handles.Caps for unity 5.6.

Have yet to use the package commercially, now I don’t want too but I dumped all this time into it & so this move totally feels like extortion to me. Really angry with you right now & I really, really hate bullys.

Does the upgrade include any example’s showing how to integrate your asset with Mecanim and root motion?

well not going to let this die right away…people should know in advance that aron granberg may charge another $50 for the next upgrade…despite his statement above that he has no plans to for “the immediate future”…double speak for “when I feel like it”…still baffled by the lack of comprehension on why I (now we and growing ) are angered at being asked to pay more for the product as early adopters than new customers…it literally makes no sense except in bizzarro world…This sets a disturbing trend and not going to take it lightly.I bought all my past assets with the secure knowledge they’d be kept current and useful by the developers with updates and fixes free of charge…now I’m not so certain.I bought a couple assets today and I’ve started emailing vendors prior to purchase asking to confirm free upgrades for life as was the norm.They answer in the negative it’s a lost sale…waaayy too many ways to skin a cat w/o incurring recurring fees.So far all positives though :slight_smile:
I believe there are other venues that talk about unity assets and vendors…perhaps time to saddle up and warn the masses…I’d put a warning on the asset store page review section but since a.granberg deprecated the 3.8 version I can’t do that (yet) :older_man:

  1. Provider’s Upgrades of Assets

Provider agrees that Provider will, at no cost to Customers and Unity, supply via the Unity Asset Store any upgrades or otherwise updated versions of all Assets that a Customer has acquired from the Unity Asset Store. For the avoidance of doubt, this does also apply to any Asset that has been distributed for free via the Unity Asset Store.

Sooo…no response to contract language (provided to me by another developer who is reading this) ?? As a last resort I will be asking for a refund due to breach of contract…either here…through a formal complaint to Unity Technologies or my credit card/paypal…you made no significant changes to your product to warrant a deprecation…there’s language in the agreement comparing a Palm tree asset being deprecated due to adding a Beach environment justifying the deprecation and upgrade fee…you added no Beach environment just enhanced and fixed what was already there…
I also wonder if there’s something going on behind the scenes like A Pathfinding being bought by UT as they did Anima2d and TextMesh…cash grab before the big news?? Either way I spent years enforcing contracts and I can’t support a developer who can’t keep up to his end of the bargain…no way I’m throwing good money after bad and certainly not paying more than a new customer will for same product…the privilege of helping you bring a polished product to market has left a sour taste so refund me and I’ll just look to an alternative vendor when needed…
I’ll likely start a thread in the next few days in the Unity Forums to warn others about your dubious practices and hopefully to stem this way of thinking…I own a LOT of assets…yours will be the first to ask for and stick to a paid upgrade scheme when basically just polishing what’s already there…totally throwing vendor agreement out the window…
good luck