Here's what I think, firstly that "expensive" is totally opinionated. Depends on how much gil you make with your daily routines, and how much you are willing to spend on things.
To get some *basic* gear including a ws set and a tp set for your sam, will run you maybe 1 mill tops. NOT counting a Hagun.
From there on, it's all about building from the base you've made for yourself. In the journey to become a top tier Samurai, you will spend well over 10 million gil. Not all at once, but every little piece you improve does make a difference. Also, your merits at Lv75 are another good way to improve while you get new gear.
Something to look at maybe as an example, is the way I think of it. I like to think there's 3 different levels of samurai players.
1. Novices, usually spend around 1-2 million gil over time to buy gear that is 'decent' for samurai, but most of these people fulltime certain pieces because they are very good for their situational uses, but misused. These players are minimalistic and don't use food in parties or events.
-These are mainly the players who play for fun, or tag along with more serious players in Dynamis, but not really anywhere else except a casual assault run or NM camp.
2. Veterans, spend around 6-15 million gil on very good high end pieces such as Kirin's Osode, Hagun, Haubergeon +1, Alkyoneus's Bracelets, etc. These players have organized gear sets for tp and weapon skilling, and often spend extra money on decent foods like Carbonara or Bison Steak, or Hedgehog Pie.
-These players often fit into dynamis, sky, and lesser HNM linkshells fairly easily. Also Nyzul Isle and CoP statics tend to be formed of these players.
3. Elites, who spend tens, even hundreds of millions of gil on even the smallest parts of their gear sets, they have multiple different very rare gear sets for similar but slightly varying circumstances. Often the gear sets are comprised of rare/ex pieces that either take a lot of time and effort to get, or a ridiculous sum of gil to get from a merc LS. These players tend to spend as much gil on one piece as a regular veteran player would spend on a whole set. Examples include relic weapons and dusk+1 gear, usukane, sea torques, etc. Also, these players tend to spend upwards of 200,000 gil just for enough food to do one event.
-These players are easily accepted into endgame (HNM, Salvage, Sea) linkshells of the highest caliber, simply because their hard work shows in the unparalleled gear they use.
So, all that was probably pretty useless to know, but on the off chance you actually read it, I hope it helps you understand a little better that Samurai can be expensive if you set your expectations high. But, if you don't take it seriously and bring out the full potential, you'll often find yourself spending only 1-2 million gil by the time you hit level 75.
Edited, Feb 5th 2010 5:12am by StephisaMAN