Olorinus the Ludicrous wrote:
Wait, people are spending money on digital csrds that do nothing?
Nothing? NOTHING? Why, once you collect all the cards you can combine them into a badge! So people will know you collected all the cards! Also, you'll get some random reward like a pointless emoticon to use on the Steam discussion boards because often am I typing and think "I wish I could make a tiny Orange Portal to punctuate my thoughts". Or a coupon for 25% off some crap game.
It used to be that you had to be level 10 to get foil drops so there was some incentive to grind out the cheap badges with the hope of turning a lucky profit. But now any level can get foil drops so even that reason is gone. It's a pure vanity thing now.
And yeah, you can only collect 50% of the cards as drops for any given game. You're supposed to trade for/buy the remainder. I suppose this helps make the badges more "exclusive" since not everyone who owns a game can get the badge for that game.
F2P games like DOTA and TF2 reset their drop rate for every $9 you spend in the Steam DOTA/TF2 store, respectively.