Final Fantasy XIV’s The Omega Protocol has finally been cleared, however, the world’s first run is under investigation after videos surfaced of a player zooming out far more than the game allowed thanks to the use of a third-party plugin.
Final Fantasy XIV’s ultimates are always huge spectacles, offering extremely difficult content for only the most competent of players. The most recent ultimate, The Omega Protocol recounts the raid series of Omega, and is arguably the most challenging ultimate Square Enix has released thus far.
As such it’s taken many days and dozens of hours for raiders to progress through the fight, and even now, most raid groups are yet to clear.
The World’s First group called UNNAMED_ took to Twitter after the clear on 31st January 2023 at 3:34 JST.
However, after a video surfaced online of one of UNNAMED_’s runs, their world’s first clear was immediately put under scrutiny. This video was posted by another member of UNNAMED_, who was not a part of the first clear of the fight.
After UNNAMED_ had finished the fight, they refused to run the fight again for the other member, who was promised a clear after the others had finished. As a result, the player took to YouTube under the guise of “Divine Judgement” in Japanese, and posted a video of a player using illicit plugins whilst progressing in the fight.
This plugin allowed the player to zoom out far more than usual, essentially letting the player have a far better view of the fight and the mechanics currently occurring.
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Plugins are directly against Final Fantasy XIV’s terms of service, and the game director Naoki Yoshida has stated that “Players who are determined to be using third-party tools will have their accounts suspended, or permanently banned for repeat offenses.”
However, these rules are not strictly enforced to the point where Square Enix actively searches for plugin users. Players still use plugins in Final Fantasy XIV, particularly for things such as cosmetics or model modification, as well as tools like Advanced Combat Tracker for combat and damage logs.
Oftentimes, players even use plugins to solve issues that the game has, such as allowing for more waymark presets. The issue only arises when players are found actively using them or talking about them in-game, and so plugins have become a sort of cultural taboo for the MMO.
Plugins are generally thought to be fine by the community but have definitely been brought into question when it comes to World First races. In both the previous ultimate and The Omega Protocol, teams have been using plugins to gain certain advantages in the race to the top.
Game Director Naoki Yoshida has taken the game’s blog posts in response to the commotion regarding the world’s first clear, claiming that “If the illicit use of third-party tools is made clear through our investigations, I, at the very least, will not recognize that team as the true World First.”
It also appears that all members of UNNAMED_ have had their achievements, gear, and titles stripped recently, meaning that it’s very possible the World’s First is still up in the air for the taking.