Naoki Yoshida, the director behind the MMO Final Fantasy XIV (FFXIV) has released a new blogpost where he explains his thoughts about unofficial plug-ins for the game and how they’ll be addressing the desire of those who use them.
In his post, Yoshida mentions the growing use of plug-ins in Final Fantasy XIV, a topic that has become more pronounced due to the game’s increased popularity and emphasis on end-game content. The game’s latest “Ultimate” trial: The Dragonsong’s Reprise has seen a mad dash for World First clout and with that increased competition, the normalized use of plug-ins has become a greater issue.
Through now, Final Fantasy XIV has remained relatively hands off on most plug-ins provided they don’t allow for anything impossible in the game. Players have swapped/edited models on their client, altered action buttons to perform combos as if they were in a PvP duty, and most frequently have used third-party plug-ins to “parse”. Parsing in the context of Final Fantasy XIV means to record combat data and produce a DPS meter and a record of player actions to identify sub-par player movement in order to improve personal performance.
Square Enix has remained largely hands off when it comes to parsing, but is quick to step-in when players publicly show off their parsing software on-stream, or use a recorded parse in order to shame another player for their performance. These plug-ins also become a problem when they provide players with unfair advantages and could even be considered “hacks” if they send false packet information to FFXIV’s servers.
Yoshida further clarifies that he feels the reason players turn to unofficial plug-ins is because existing features are insufficient and he claims the team intends to enhance the game’s standard features.
We believe that people use the aforementioned tools to expand the HUD and display more information because they feel that existing functions are insufficient for tackling high-end duties. In recognition of this, we intend to review the most prominent tools, and in order to discourage their use, endeavor to enhance the functionality of the HUD. Though it will take some time, we’re determined to make it happen─not least for the benefit of those who play on consoles.
Unofficial mods aren’t the only things Square Enix is cracking down on. The new PvP mode Crystalline Conflict brought an increase in “abusive behavior” which Yoshida was quick to call out and promise punishments for.