You can replace USplash with Splashy. Though USplash has much better FBE Animations its a big PIA to customize and requires conversion of a graphic file with a MAX of 256 Colors (Yech) to C code. Not for the average User. Splashy Is a lot different, I made a Kubuntu Customization kit that you can get here: http://www.kde-look.org/content/show.php/Kubuntu+Customization+Kit?content=73085&PHPSESSID=5907a58bb01b5e9eed44ed245e02d96e
It has a version of Splashy specifically designed for Gutsy Gibbon based Distros like Daryna. You can easily modify the default Splashy Theme, even if you don't know XML by changing the background image. In that kit I give the instructions on how to install and setup Splashy. There is one issue though, when you update the kernel you also have to edit /boot/grub/menu.lst and put in the vga=791 code again.
It isn't about it being free. Rather, its about the freedom it brings.