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Final Fantasy 14 dispute ends in the death of its most popular mod

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Ask a Final Fantasy 14 diehard what mods they use and many of them will say GShade, a fork of Reshade that lets you customize the game’s visuals. GShade has long been the tool to make the MMO (and several other games) look pretty for screenshots, allowing you to add shaders for a more vibrant or avant-garde aesthetic.

GShade, at least for the moment, is gone. Its creator, Marot Satil, announced in the GPOSERS Discord that it “will not receive updates for the time being.” But at the time of this writing, GShade’s GitHub page, including Satil’s account, have been removed.

Over the last few days, Satil has been battling another modder, NotNite, who made an alternative version of the software called GeezShade. GeezShade is essentially a fork of ReShade that uses a workaround to download and install most of the custom shaders from GShade.

“[GShade’s] installer is a total mess that also is not open source,” NotNite wrote on their blog. “Of course, monkey see and monkey get idea – let’s install ReShade with the GShade shaders!”

NotNite also made an online tool to patch GShade and fix how it works when there’s a new update available. Usually, GShade disables itself when there’s a new version—a frequent annoyance for anyone that uses it. NotNite’s patch simply removes the check.

All of this prompted Satil to release a new version of GShade that breaks GeezShade and password protects all the files so third-party apps can’t access them. In response, NotNite updated GeezShade (under the name DeezShade) so that it uses GShade’s installer to get around the password requirement.

On Monday, GShade users attempting to use NotNite’s new installer started having their PC’s restart. Understandably, this quickly made its way through the GShade community as people were worried if it could cause actual harm to their PCs. 

Yes, this is the kind of bullshit that GShade is working on, rather than bothering to implement a more sensible update system. The installer RESTARTS YOUR SYSTEM if it detects it’s not being run “properly”. Continued… pic.twitter.com/3eacb6RH5UFebruary 6, 2023

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So the Gshade stuff has a new development: Gshade is fucking dead. The Github is GONE, following a github investigation.Which means that all current, unmodified installs of Gshade are bricked. pic.twitter.com/hZs5cCUOsqFebruary 7, 2023

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NotNite confronted Satil about the forced restarts on the r/FFXIV Discord. Satil admitted that the restarts were part of an anti-tamper code for third-party software using GShade’s installer. “This was meant to be a lesson to you specifically about taking this approach to the problem,” Satil wrote, “anything could have been in the payload and you’d have been responsible for distributing it to people and triggering it.

“I chose a restart specifically because I wanted something that was still completely harmless, but slightly more noticeable than a quick process kill. Considering it similar to what anticheat software does when something particularly bad turns up.”

Satil was then banned from the r/FFXIV Discord and the mods announced that they will no longer support GShade.

Without one of FF14’s most popular mods, players are migrating their custom settings to ReShade so they can go back to taking photos of their catgirls. 

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