Update, February 1: The raid group from Final Fantasy 14 that started the controversy that required the MMO’s director to step in has confirmed that everyone involved has been punished.
A member of Unnamed updated the public on the matter on Twitter(opens in new tab) in both English and Japanese, stating that the group had been punished in-game and apologizing profusely for the problems they had caused the Final Fantasy 14 development team, the public, and their friends.
Another member of the squad went one step further(opens in new tab), displaying a dialogue with a game master confirming that all the titles and loot acquired from completing the Ultimate raid would be removed.
Naoki Yoshida stated in his initial post that if the squad had been found guilty, he would not have recognized them as the first team to successfully complete the Omega Protocol Ultimate raid. Since then, a different team has asserted that it defeated the raid.
Update, January 31: Naoki Yoshida, the director, and producer of Final Fantasy 14, addressed the growing controversy surrounding the Omega Protocol Ultimate raid and vowed to punish anyone found to be utilizing third-party tools.
Yoshida reveals in a recent blog post(opens in new tab) that Square Enix is looking into reports that the group now asserting World First employed plug-ins, such as a modified zoom function. As a result, the team is holding off on disclosing who actually finished the Ultimate raid first.
I want to express my regret in particular to the many of you who are working to remove this stuff without the aid of outside programs, regularly updating your followers on your progress, and persevering with the trial-and-error method, Yoshida says. The Development and Operations teams are aware of your enthusiasm, though, so please know that. As you work through The Omega Protocol (Ultimate), remember to take good care of yourself.
Yoshida adds that the studio is aware of the community’s desire for a Square Enix-sponsored official raid with strict criteria. “Please allow me to keep this as an item for future consideration. This is a matter which needs to be considered internally,” he says.
Original story: The world’s first championship for Omega Protocol’s ultimate version was won by a Final Fantasy 14 raid team six days after the game’s release. But it didn’t take long for that victory to be clouded by allegations of rule violations.
Unnamed, a well-known raiding team, tweeted screenshots(opens in new tab) last night indicating that the raid had been successfully finished. No footage or raid records were supplied, but that isn’t unusual for Final Fantasy 14. People had plenty of evidence to suggest that the raid was successfully accomplished when members of the group started to appear in the game’s social areas(opens in a new tab) with their recently obtained loot.
However, soon after, a video of Unnamed’s clear surfaced, showing they had used a number of plugins, including a third-party zoom tool. Naturally, that violates the MMO’s Terms of Service agreement(opens in new tab), which leads to a discussion on the legitimacy of the run and whether bans ought to be issued.
Although Square Enix hasn’t spoken at the time of writing, a well-known Final Fantasy 14 statistics tracking website has stated(opens in new tab) that the team would follow anything Square Enix chooses to enforce. According to Audrey, CEO of Aita Japan and a Twitter user(opens in new tab), the terms “world first,” “zoom hack,” and “third-party tools” have all been popular in Japan recently.
Naturally, the extended zoom used to show the raid clearly has also been made into a joke that the public enjoys.