Wizards has posted a sneak peek at their new, web-based character creator that we’ve mentioned before. Screenshots at the link. Scheduled for release on the 16th.

This release will fix a few problems, like leaving your character on a computer somewhere else. I suppose it’ll also be virtually impossible to pirate the full version now. They’ve also made the concession that you can now subscribe to D&D Insider in monthly or quarterly chunks. However, the new character builder doesn’t currently have any demo functionality and they “hope to make it available soon.” As soon as this one goes live, the old one will stop being available for download, so non-subscribers might want to go ahead a grab a copy of the old downloadable demo.

They also managed to pick the one web-based technology that can still lock me out of using the service on my laptop: Microsoft Silverlight. (Yeah, I know there are open-source implementations. We’ll see how it goes.)

So, the only gains are the lack of need to install, and characters being stored in the cloud. And I already get half that from Dropbox.