At the early levels in Tree of Savior, mobs drop a lot of gear and a lot of quests give gear as rewards. This isn't any different from a lot of other MMORPGs.
But somewhere around level 60 or so, mobs mostly stop dropping gear. Instead, they drop recipes that can be used to craft gear. Likewise, quests transition from giving you gear as rewards to giving you recipes to craft gear. There aren't fixed crafting professions in Tree of Savior, but if you have the recipe and materials, you can craft the gear, period. The materials are often pretty common mob drops.
When grouping for dungeons, a lot of mobs basically don't hurt me, as I've got pretty good gear. But I commonly see other players in groups taking massive damage and sometimes even dying. It was obvious that they didn't have as good of gear, so I tried inspecting people to see what they had.
In groups for dungeons with level requirements of 115 and 130, I've seen a lot of players wearing a lot of two-star gear. That is, gear with a level requirement of 15, and they're still wearing it more than 100 levels later. Some players have empty gear slots, or have some gear that is broken and they haven't bothered to fix it even before the start of a dungeon run.
As best as I can tell, what such players are doing is to equip gear that they happen to get to drop. And when the gear stops dropping directly, they stop equipping better gear. I tried to convince some people that, even if you're not willing to pay for the 1 million silver pieces of gear, at least get the cheap upgrades that can be had for 20k on the auction house.