There was a F2P game I played where players had an area they could farm. You could then visit friends' farms and help remove pests, weeds, or even revive crops that had been left to harvest for too long. You'd have the first two happen at your farm, too, but couldn't revive your own stuff. Anyway, those actions gave you farm EXP, and as that leveled, you got more land plots and could buy better crops to plant. In XIV's case, I could see shards being a good fit as potential crop. The game also allowed cash and EXP, but I could see some disliking that notion. Personally, I don't want to see farming exclusive loot as it risks becoming a pressured activity, then, especially if time sensitive like XI's was.
Violence good. Sexy bad. Yay America.