Ghost town-ish? What server you on? Even tho FF14 is out only a minor drop in players has happened. People still play and level lots of jobs. They still do low level missions and quests. Things aren't as expensive as they were before. I think if anything the game has gotten easier.
Unless things have changed the starter cities are near ghost towns if holiday events are not happening. I would see maybe 20 people total, and that was a couple years ago.
FFXI may do alright though for awhile. With the disaster of FFXIV's launch there isn't much insentive for people to switch yet.