I see a lot of posts like these, and I'm left to wonder: is the issue the subscription model - which I know a lot of people aren't fans of - or the value proposition of C3 with a subscription model?
There were those who pointed out that the nature of subscription/rental will prevent access to your work when the rent expires (ie stop paying). I have 2 different povs on this.
For example, I use Adobe CC for professional work (visual effects). But my work is essentially my studio's product for client's product. If any work is being held hostage by the rental scheme, it's not 'mine', as it were, but the studios and the clients. If they want to pay the ransom fee to alter the product after its first delivery, they're free to do it. It's the cost of doing business with Adobe. And the main thing is, at this point, it's not about the technicalities of file formats or back-compatibility; it's all about flow of money to the studio and to Adobe. As long as the studio has that flow, they're good. You can add to this that there's a certain volatility in working with 'media' projects, so that projects are done at a speed generally faster than development (in games, or other code projects).
The implications of a rental model involve _effective_ ownership: I can always claim IP but without a way to use it, that's a farce. And to me, the technicalities are just as important, if not more, than the monetary implications associated with subscription/rental. One forum poster asked: what's to stop rental prices from going up once subscribed? Then consider the fact that your choices are lop-sided: don't pay, and never be able to work on your project again, or pay up. That no-choice is the crux of my issue: it's not the price, per se, but it's that fact you don't have a choice once you start subscribing.
There are many ways to approach licensing and making money with a product as good as C2. I agree that a one-time payment was too generous for the kind of updates they were rolling out. I myself did the same thing for a LW plugin I wrote, and got major burns, so I get it.
But, why stop at one licencing method? I find a maintenance plan a more friendly way especially since C2's tradition has been regular updates. For example: Pay a yearly maintenance, get updates. If you stop paying, you don't get upgrades but can use the last version you paid for. If you want to take up the maintenance again, it can be taken up again for the full price or some other price you deem fair.