GShade, an unofficial plug-in for Final Fantasy XIV, has been accused of becoming malware after a recent update added code that forced its users’ computers to shut down. An example of the shutdown was shared on Twitter by user perchbird. In response, GShade users have taken to Twitter and Discord to accuse the program of being malware.
Gshade, a graphical enhancement modification that adds shaders and other visual elements to games, primarily used for enhancing screenshots, is a common but unauthorized plug-in for FFXIV. The shutdown code was apparently added as a measure to prevent another plug-in from utilizing GShade’s installer.
The other plugin was designed to use Reshade’s software (another shading program) with GShade’s assets. It was developed in response to forced and frequent updates of GShade, which impacted user experience. GShade reportedly also refuses to uninstall unless it is updated.
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In a statement on the Gposers Discord, GShade developer Marot Satil stated that “Anti-tampering code is not unusual in proprietary software” and that it “It is impossible to trigger that code by running the GShade installer as a normal end-user in any fashion.” They explained that their decision to make PCs shut down in response to tampering was made because it “was completely harmless, but slightly more noticeable than a quick process kill.” They also compared it to what anti-cheat software does, although we can find no examples of conventional mass-market anti-cheat software shutting down user computers.
However, even users who might not use additional modifications, such as Reshade, are clearly uncomfortable with the idea of a plug-in shutting down their computer. What’s more, the modding and plug-in community likely doesn’t need more unwanted attention given the recent controversy around the TOP world first clear. Square Enix’s own guidelines warn against using plug-ins and third-party programs for the very reason that some may be malware. GShade has chosen a dangerous time to make an unpopular decision about its development.
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An FFXIV plug-in accused of being malware is shutting down its users PCs