Splinterlands just released their "collection power" ranking. And within the collection power consists values for alpha, beta, promo, reward, untamed, and of course gold foil versions of each.
There's currently a panic going on by two groups of people that are trying to convince others that 1) the collection score is going to make the game "pay for play" and 2) "collector" versions of cards (ie...alpha vs beta or regular foil vs gold foil) are not being calculated properly. While I'm sympathetic to anyone that has true concerns about anything (I've had my share of rants), I'd like to address both of these arguments.
"Pay To Play Argument" Is A Red Herring
First, the pay to play argument is silly. Of course, if you want to play in the Champion league level and be in the top 50, then of course you must pay to play in that league. Also if you want to enter the "gold foil" tournaments, then you must pay to play in order to get those golds. But, if you want to invest a modest $20 ($10 for the starter deck, and $10 for either buying or leasing key cards), then you can certainly get much enjoyment from the game.
On top of that, you can also earn something from having those cards as you will earn DEC on every match, plus also earn loot box rewards from both daily quests and season ranking. So of course its pay to play at the top levels, but what on earth would anyone expect? There is nothing in this world that gives people something for nothing, and this argument is a red herring for people seeking grievances for other reasons.
Gold Foils Are A Blessing
Second, a few people are making the argument that making the collection power reflect the higher DEC value of promos, alphas, and gold foil versions this somehow disadvantages people that don't have a lot of money. Let me give an alternative view of this argument.
When the collection power is implemented to encourage decks of certain sizes to play in certain leagues, then that calculation will be made by the developers to determine what is a reasonable size account to be in a certain level. So for instance, they may determine accounts of say 50,000 DEC should be in Silver level or below (note this is just an example, I haven't done the math yet). I'm sure they will do this by calculating a sufficient level of summoners and monsters needed to provide a competitive playing deck in the silver ranks.
So there are 6 splinters + neutrals; plus all the cards combinations over the 4 different versions: 1) alpha/beta 2) reward 3) promo 4) Untamed. When you add up all the DEC requirement for say 80% of the total of all these cards for level 5 common, level 4 rare, level 3 epic, and level 2 legends, then you will get a DEC score that you would EXPECT a good competitive Silver Level deck to be.
So for argument's sake, lets assume that is 50,000 DEC. Now here's the point where the Gold Foils become a blessing. Lets say you are super smart and feel that you can "win" with less than a 50,000 DEC level, and you feel you can progress to the NEXT league up the Gold League. In order to do that, you will need to have at least a 50K collection score.
So here's where the Gold-Foil versions of the cards enable you to effectively "cheat". A gold-foil version is worth 50x more than a regular-foil version. So if you have 45,000 DEC score, then you can either a) change some of your regular foil versions of the cards you love for the gold foil versions, or b) you can just add any gold foil cards to your collection and boost your score. In essence the gold foil versions enable a good player to go without all the cards that other players would typically have, and thus enable them to advance to the next league at a fraction of the cost. (NOTE: gold foil versions (while 50x more rare) are nowhere near 50x the price of the regular foil version, in fact in many cases they are substantially below that)
So for the people that say that Gold Foil versions shouldn't be counted in the collection power based on their DEC value, I say be very careful what you wish for. The gold foil version valuation metrics will enable the good players an opportunity to efficiently play their decks at a higher level than if all foil versions were treated equally. Said another way, you will have to meet the collection score either way, so having a way to do it cost efficiently is not a curse, but instead a blessing.