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Downloaded a free copy of TwistedBrush Pro Studio from BitsDuJour a few weeks back and am considering upgrading to the top version (for something like $30). But ArtRage gets pretty high marks too and the price isn't that much more. For anyone who's used both, how do they stack up? Or should I just bite the bullet and buy both -- after all, $90 combined is still pretty affordable compared to Photoshop or Painter...
Twisted Brush has vastly more brushes, tools and filters. It's actually a very good painting program, if a little old fashioned looking. It's also constantly updated. Artrage is quite a beautiful "little" program that specialises in a clean, easy to use workflow. You probably know this anyway. Both have very good oils.
As always, a lot might depend on the type of work you do and there will be a lot of crossover. I only dabble in both these days as I use Painter and PS. I'd get both as it's always a good idea to have two programs available, in my opinion, but they are so different that it's worth downloading 30 day trials and comparing. Twisted Brush would be your workhorse but Artrage could easily do the job for a painter on its own.