Yoshi-P wants to sanction Final Fantasy XIV Raid Races, but he needs the community's help

While there was only so much we could gleam about Final Fantasy XIV: Dawntrail from the slice of the expansion that we had the chance to try during the media tour, one thing that was on my mind has been raiding. Specifically, what the team's intentions were going forward, after the tumultous state of the raid scene during both Endwalker and Shadowbringers. 

During an interview with Yoshi-P, when asked about whether the team has any desire to officially sanction a raid race Yoshi-P expressed a great desire to conduct a raid race - especially to clamp down on the use of cheats during world first progression. However, it was also expressed that despite that desire, the team isn't entirely sure how best to let that happen - and that simply stating that they want to officially sanction a race isn't enough on its own to make it viable.

I think I have the strongest desire to have an officially sanctioned world-first race, yet whenever we find out that players have been relying on a 3rd-party add-on it's heartbreaking at the same time. So that begs the question, why don't we officially sanction a raid race, so we can shut out those activities that break our Terms of Use? However, no matter how we analyze the problem, we can't find a solution to completely shut those tools out.

For example - even if a players' winning run didn't use add-ons, the dev-team understands that there's no telling that players progression might have benefited from add-ons beforehand, or if the team had practiced the mechanics using simulators. Even mandating teams submit videos for their winning runs wouldn't be enough to entirely confirm add-ons had not been used by the winning team. Not to mention, how should they regulate the existence of support members -  players that watch the active players on Discord to help with callouts? Should players that act as crafters for the raid team also be credited for their role in helping the team get their win?

There may be some teams that work with a helper that is overseeing and calling out where to go next. So beyond the 8-person party you've got a 9th person in the Discord channel observing what's going on, and is able to direct the players. How do we set the rules for that?  8 players, plus a support member? Or another example might be that they have teammates that may not be battle participants, but they craft the gear that's neccessary, or do the necessary preparations for the battle members. Would they be considered part of the helper team? 

The team's main concern stems from the fact that they want to be on the same page as the players that would participate in the raids themselves, and they're worried that if there isn't that consensus they might be ruining the excitement of the race by stepping in and deciding matters unilaterally. So, they want the community to come together and make it clear exactly how the rules should be set before the team can fully commit to the idea.

I don't want to give up on the idea, because it is exciting! So if there are any suggestions for how to regulate the race, and how rules should be setup, we want to hear the feedback. The development team is also very interested in how people progress through these raid races. We watch these streams on Twitch, and follow along! We understand that it is a very exciting event, so any feedback for how we could regulate this is greatly appreciated.

As a raider, I'm encouraged that the team has thought about the subject so deeply, and considered how their actions might have both positive and negative impacts on these races. Lastly, it's heartbreaking to hear how the team has internalized the idea that some players might have pursued using add-ons to get World 1st in some races specifically to get the praise from the dev team - but Yoshi-P ended off his response by making it very clear that despite it all he really, really wants to be able to sanction a Raid Race eventually. In other words; the ball is in the community's court, and it's up to the raid scene as a whole to decide how things will progress next.