Special note to users of version 3.1
Bottom line: if you like version 3.1, there's no reason to upgrade to 4.0 at this time. The features are basically the same between the two products. Feel free to download and try the version 4.0 for free. But we don't recommend buying the new version if you're happy with the old version.
In user tests, new users preferred version 4.0 because it doesn't require Java to be installed on the computer and it has simpler interface. Current users of Character Writer were split. Some liked it, some didn't.
Main differences between version 3.1 and 4.0
The biggest change for version 4.0 was that we got away from requiring Java on your computer. Version 4.0 no longer requires any other software to be installed on your PC or Mac to use the product.
In version 4.0, we made the Character mode simpler by removing most of the tabs of data. The main reason was that in 3.1 the user would focus attention on each part of the character on tabs like "Education" and "Background," which was good. But once a character profile was generated, then it got confusing because if you changed the generated profile, it didn't sync with the tabs anymore. There were occasions where a user changed the character profile and re-generated the character profile which overwrote all their changes.
We also built the new version on a different platform that allows us to use HTML5 coding. This allows us to distribute the full program without requiring Java and allows us to eventually launch a web version of the program instead of having to install it on your computer. The reason we kept the installation version for now is that the user can work "offline" in this version and save files safely to their own computer if they want instead to the cloud.
The final difference is that because this is built on a different platform, the files created in version 3.1 aren't compatible with version 4.0. You could copy/paste your character profile into Character Writer, but that won't update the basic info or type tabs. We're working on a character import feature for future versions.
Thanks and let us know if you have problems and issues.
-- Dev Team