The Rebellion Card Set for Splinterlands is about to Release in 3 days and today I will try to break down if packs/Cards are actually a good investment or not...
How Much A Rebellion Investment Cost?
So to play Splinterlands you need the 10$ Spellbook and if you want cards from the Rebellion set you either need to get them from packs or you buy them off the market. Currently, packs go for 3.44$ so it's a matter of knowing how many you need at each level to know what it roughly would cost. As a Gold League player, I need Level 8 Common Cards (220 copies), Level 6 rare (60 Copies), Level 5 Epic (32 Copies), Level 3 Legendary (6 Copies). Based on my experience with Chaos Legion in order to get what isn't even a complete set, I needed to buy 610 packs, get a lot of then from the reward chests which I all opened and cost-average my way into buying all the legendary summoners which I only got a handful airdropped. So I would say with 1000 Packs you aren't there yet to get a complete set. This means in order to get a competitive Rebelling Set for Gold Modern at the current price, it would need at least a 4000$ investment on top of owning the Chaos Legion cards already.
There is no real point getting in for much less as cards will have lower levels making them less competitive so even putting in 1000$ would get me nowhere. So it's fair to say that Splinterlands at this level is a really expensive game to play even though you own your assets which can be sold later down the line.
How Much Time Investment Is Needed ?
Each day, you really want to get your 25 Battles in and on top of that, you want to participate in the Brawls and possibly some Tournaments. Unless you want to run a bot in Wild, playing Splinterlands will take quite a large time investment. While in the past it didn't take nearly as long to submit fights, nowadays there are so many options with 3 different game rules and a lot of cards that it takes at least 2 minutes I would say for each battle when you kind of rush it. Adding this up, conservatively it takes about 1 hour of play each day in order to get the most out of it. For someone who loves the game for what it is and sees it as a daily hobby this is just fine, but looking at it from an actual time investment to get a return it makes no sense.
This is also one of the massive downsides of Splinterlands compared to Web 2 games. If you just play the game whenever you feel like it you will miss out on so many of the rewards that it kinds of starts feeling like a task. You also kind of feel bad on days where you leave your capture rate untouched.
Rebellion Value Expectation!
There will be I believe a maximum of 10 Million Packs available over the course of the set which likely will be a lot less as packs will be burned daily based on how many got sold. This however means that over the course of the year, there is almost zero chance that card prices go higher than the pack cost as the monet this is the case, people will start buying packs to open selling the cards for a profit. Generally prices of cards from packs (unless you get extremely lucky which you can't count on) are lower compared to what was paid for them even when using Potions. These potions are also something that heavily disadvantage new players since they either need to buy them or get worse pack opening results.
The older cards from Alpha / Beta / Untamed cards have seem an increase in value compared to what was paid for the packs mainly because there was a huge adoption wave after Untamed got sold out.
However, Chaos Legion got overprinted like crazy with 10x the print rate and now are only worth a fraction of what players paid for packs. If anything I do expect this to go up as it makes more sense for newer players to at least start with buying Chaos Legion cards off the market which are way cheaper compared to Rebellion Packs.
Rewards For Playing Splinterlands!
As a player who has been in the ecosystem I saw a totally unsustainable way to give out rewards with cards that could be sold, tons of DEC, packs... get nerfed down to a point where only the SPS and the DEC burn value you can get from packs bought with merits as real rewards. From what I understand, there is no direct plan to include Rebellion Packs in Reward Chests even though there was a vote not to include them which isn't going to pass
I don't mind the system where cards became Soulbound and it actually provided a fun experience even though those cards don't have any monetary value. Having no card packs though to me feels like the final blow in the rewards which now are totally nerfed down to next to zero. Sure SPS has some value which likely will go up over time, but at the rate it is earned right now it doesn't really line up with the needed investment.
Splinterlands Opportunity Cost!
This for me is by far the biggest problem I face with the game in that the combination of money investment, time investment and the rewards expecially for Rebellion don't add up to the potential earnings it will bring. This especially when comparing it to other investment that don't require any time. I'm quite sure during the bull run as an investment that it would yield far better results to just buy and hold BTC or SPS and hold on to it compared to buying Rebellion packs. On top of this, the time saved not playing the game can be used to do way more productive or profitable thing which makes the opportunity cost massive.
There is always a chance of another crazy adoption wave for the game but even if this is the case it is unlikely to yield immediate returns for Rebellion cards as long as they are sold.
Splinterlands especially when talking about Rebellion at this point is mainly a game and by no means an investment. You buy the packs to have some fun knowing that you earn part of what they will lose in value back in rewards while having some fun playing the game which is offering a lot more than the current web 2 games. There is always a chance that over time the demand will rise exponentially making it turn out as a great investment but this can only happen after the set is sold out. As someone who is in the space for the profit first and the fun secondary, it's just impossible to justify getting into Rebellion and I plan to slowly opt out of Splinterlands from here on out over time patiently waiting for the adoption wave.