I'm a competitive person, and I'm sure I'm not alone in the FF community in that regard. So when I did my best in XI, yet was still light-years behind the top players in terms of gil, questions arise. Acquiring gil is the only real obstacle the game has to offer - 15/15 Skadi was fun as I enjoyed Salvage; the mythic requirements outside of Alexandrites were mostly what I was doing anyway, etc. I have every Rare/Ex drop I feel I "need," and my standards are sky high. The only thing absent is sheer gil. And I don't mean 10m, because that's want-to. I mean hundreds of millions.
Enough to buy 30,000 Alexandrites, enough to buy Dusk Gloves +1, enough to buy a Speed Belt (or God forbid I target Ninurta's Sash instead). For brevity's sake I won't go into everything that gil is needed for, but the point here is that it's easily hundreds of millions.
What makes the above a difficult reality, is when you see the players with real gil. You know the type - gil is never an obstacle for them, at all. If they want something, and gil is part of the equation, it's taken care of immediately, even if it's a truly massive amount. Even the most naive know what this means.
Bottom line - an overwhelming percentage of people with hundreds of millions either bought gil, or took it from their LS. Now, finally to my point.
Taking this and applying it to XIV, to enjoy the game the most, will you play within the rules and try to take solace in your legitimacy? Or will the insurmountable amount of gil needed for something you're dying for, coupled with the reality of others cheating to obtain it.. ..prove too much to deal with? Would you sooner quit, or cave in and engage in the illicit activity as well?
In XI, I've had a sullen mindset for a long time - it really took shape when their Alexandrite plans were made known, and I realized it was another cop out to the rich players. Quite frankly, it broke my spirit, and to start XIV in the same way would be truly depressing.
Perhaps the happy medium is just playing through the storylines, but after being a hard core XI'er, I know I'll be missing out on so much. When I think back on FFXI, the thing that stands out first is the nightly Salvage, and how much fun endgame can be if you're doing events you like, with the right people. It might be better to slog through halfheartedly than to give up that aspect entirely. I don't know. I wish I did..