Last year there was a pix posted of a guy who wrapped his feet in duct tape.
Personally, I agree about the wing tips. You _never_ go wrong with wing tips.
Everybody's mileage varies. Wearing sandals and flipflops worked for me in terms of foot support, but the playa powder ate my feet alive. It took a few weeks for my skin to heal and turn back to flesh color (well, what passes for flesh color vis-a-vis my feet). I've started wearing ankle-high walking shoes and low rise sneakers or comfortable work shoes.
The playa is level and there's no gravel, but on occasion the surface has been rugged and the use of shoes with thick, stiff soles made walking on that surface _much_ more comfortable.
My opinion is that the variables are each individual's ability to withstand the alkalai playa powder and the condition of the surface of the playa. Without that information, any suggestions I make are guesses based on how I deal with it.