Why not make Aseprite free if the source code is already out for free?

Read title.
(why is there a minimum character requirement? this causes some problems, especially for posts that can have everything explained in the title)

I think that is why if you pay for Aseprite, they will be able to continue improving it with the incentive to collect that money and invest their time in Aseprite.

If they release it … ok Aseprite is free but … who will work on it for free?


Most people can’t compile it themselves and get a pre-compiled executable and updates as a paid service. And as SynthED said, the developers need to eat to continue development.


Well, the devs do need money but back when Aseprite was free & open-source people still did put a lot of work in developing it.

1 Like

@nize when you say “people” I guess you mean myself, because most of the work has been done by me if I remember correctly. From 2001 to 2015 I was working on Aseprite in my spare-time, now it’s my full-time job.

@CST1229 Regarding the business model, there are no plans to make Aseprite free (we can keep the business going in this way). The source code is available because it was already available before I started doing a business from it, so it was a nice thing to keep. People that cannot afford the program will pirate it anyway, so having the source code is a way to access the program without viruses with a little of effort. (There are other reasons I would prefer to create closed source apps in the future, but this is not the case.)

I will say this: we are living with the income generated by Aseprite, this is no joke. It’s our only income, so if Aseprite is free again, it would be only because we found other business.


I’m actually glad to hear that from you, for real. it’s great that the work you’re putting into aseprite is being appreciated.

But i just gotta ask – could the market eventually get saturated one day? every user only buys the program once, so all of your income are currently new users, am i right?

Have you been thinking of adjusting the business model at any point? for example big updates as a purchase? or basically what Sketch does – a time period of free updates with the purchase (1 or 2 years or something like that)


Thanks @Glitcher for your kind words, about your points:

  • Could the market eventually get saturated one day? That’s the answer that nobody knows :sweat_smile: The only thing I guess is that if that happens, we would notice it in a slow drop in sales.
  • Our only income are new users, that’s right. Anyway we don’t have to underestimate that. The number of new pixel-artists and game developers in the world per year (in schools, at home, on teams, etc.) is quite large.
  • About the business model, I’ve considered many options in these years, but one thing is true: There are no plans to change it while it works.

Have you considered crowd-founding some features which people want to get prioritized more? Like imagine people wanting to have new feature X and have some way to sponsor the project to get it done faster? I’ve already bought Aseprite, but I’d throw some extra bucks into it if it meant that I knew that the features that I want would get some extra attention.


Hola tengo una pregunta ocupar LibreSprite ¿es legal ?

I compiled the latest version because the latest one that I could find “freely” available is quite old. It appears you are being given an unspoken pass on having your software pirated, at least where I frequent. You are an indie developer after all. I will not share your software, this is an outstanding program and you deserve to be compensated for your efforts. That being the case I will go ahead and purchase it soon.

Honestly if you raised the price to 25 no one would scoff at it. Maybe even charge a dollar for upgrades if you’re adding new functionality.

Would you rather a subscription model?

Just curious

No, I abhor subscription models on software. A person’s effort has value, but profiting indefinitely off the same person on the same chunk of effort is greed. Plain and simple. They aren’t providing a constant service day after day.

It’s no different than if you paid a monthly subscription for your car, or your TV.


Agreed tthanks

Reading this made me feel so bad about compiling this, I’ll make sure in the future I’m going to pay for the software. :slight_smile:

1 Like

Dont let it become Subscription charging mode.
Look at the Adobe or sketch, you need pay High price for Adobe, only real artist use it, and the sketch also became useless thing when we have Figma and AdobeXD.
You can offer a Pro version which alow people save their stuffs on cloud and use remote function, maybe useful for someone’s workflow, some of user can pay money upgrade to Pro version.


One thing I disagree and want to clarify: having updates to a software you use is an ongoing service :slight_smile: Even if it’s not day after day, it’s still some value added after you already paid.

That’s what new releases are for.

I pay a flat fee to use a specific software revision, say Aseprite 2021. That allows me to use that version and it’s capabilities for as long as I wish for that one fee. Why should I pay a fee month after month to use software with the same capabilities until the creator decides to update it? If a later revision adds enhanced capabilities I am free to decide if I want to buy the new version.

A subscription model does not promote the enhancements that a purchase model does. The creator knows they are going to continue to profit off a subscription regardless of what they add. A purchase model incentivizes them to create a truly better product because they have to make the software worth another purchase.

Sorry, but a subscription model creates complacency. A purchase model creates ingenuity. Subscriptions models arose from greed, plain and simple.