Square Enix is cracking down on any and all Final Fantasy 14 players who install and use third-party tools as part of the most recent patch. Such items are now illegal, and anyone caught using them risks suspension or perhaps a lifetime ban.
BagelGooseFF, a Twitch streamer, either missed or ignored the memo, and was banned live on stream as a result.
He and other players were taking part in the new raid, Dragonsong’s Reprise (Ultimate), when he was abruptly expelled from the raid and teleported to an empty room. Square Enix doesn’t want anyone cheating, so banning third-party tools is sense, but BagelGooseFF wasn’t exactly cheating. According to the video of his ban, the only change he appeared to be making was to the user interface. To show countdown clocks for the party’s buffs and debuffs, which you can’t typically do in Final Fantasy 14.
The video is no longer available on Twitch, since BagelGooseFF’s channel has been temporally suspended as well, probably due to his Final Fantasy 14 ban. It was, however, uploaded to LivestreamFails. It makes little difference whether this is deemed cheating or not; Square Enix prohibits it.
Producer and director Naoki Yoshida explained; “As stated in the terms of service for Final Fantasy 14: the use of third-party tools is strictly prohibited. Players who are determined to be using third-party tools will have their accounts suspended, or permanently banned for repeat offenses. We have received requests from players asking that we define what tools are and aren’t permissible, but to do so would require an assessment of all third-party tools available on the internet, as well as all gaming devices and their functionality. Unfortunately, such an undertaking is physically impossible, which is why we decided to simply prohibit the use of all third-party tools and software.”
Some users utilize tools to change the user interface, according to Yoshida, since they believe “existing functions are insufficient for tackling high-end duties.”
In response, he promises to improve this element so that consumers are less likely to use third-party solutions. There is currently a debate among players as to whether Square Enix is being unfair. Some argue that Square Enix was willing to accept the use of tools as long as no one talked about it in a Reddit discussion concerning BagelGooseFF’s ban, but streamers have made that impossible. Others believe Square Enix’s action is anti-consumer, claiming that if the user experience was better, people would not be using these tools in the first place.