I have a feeling this will be a BIG debate in the coming months... on why CMO isn't an "upgrade" of CMANO (and by upgrade, meaning, current CMANO owners shouldn't pay for CMO in full and just pay a smaller amount instead because they feel they are just "upgrading" from being CMANO users), so here's my two cents. I actually like the fact that this is going to be a separate product, and I'm willing to shelve out money to get it.
The main reason I like that it's a new product is simple--it's completely re-written from the ground up, and thus the limitations of the old engine are gone--they took a more proactive route which means that this new engine looks forward and is more anticipatory of new miltech that might come out soon and need to be integrated into CMO. As a former computer science major, I do understand that sometimes, just trying to keep patching something up just to keep current or to keep bugs away, is not always a good solution--sometimes rewriting things from the ground up with more efficient code and algos can really make software shine.
Another reason is that I do like to see the old CMANO still exist as-is (and hopefully with continual support from Matrix/Slitherine/WS) because it's still a great game as it is.
One final reason why I like CMO to be a separate product is to support the devs. This is a niche product, and unlike what teenaged gamers nowadays want in a game, CMANO/CMO is not that "in demand" and thus I would think it's hard for a company like MatrixGames to really sell and market such a niche product, and they really need the support of the community so that they can keep on improving.
To those among you here who are fans of the ARMA series of games, this situation is akin to how Arma 2 users felt when Arma 3 was announced--they secretly wished that somehow, Arma 3 was just an "improvement" of Arma 2, and that they, the players wouldn't have to pay a FULL price for a new product and rather just pay a smaller fee and receive the new Arma 3 as an "upgrade"... that never happened, and I think it was for the good of the incoming product, and now it's clear that Arma 3 being a separate product that users pay separately for, was a good decision.
This is an excellent post. I totally agree and already reserved money for C:MO. I am sure it will be a great success.