I do not like SOE. Never have and probably never will. However, they acquired a pretty good CCG/TCG company that they are now using to bring popular card and miniature games to the online space. Since there are very few commercial successes in this area I have to question the move, but none the less I am happy to see some quality coming out of their line up.
Case in point. Pirates CSG Online. This is probably the only game from SOE I would consider paying to play and it more has to do with the fact that WizKids made a damn fine game that SOE is just publishing an online portion of. Even then it will not be in a "buy a virtual booster pack of cards for virtual play pieces at the same price as the real stuff". I would pay a small monthly or reasonable one time fee for access to whatever I need to play.
It is currently in beta so head on over and get the client for free. All you need to play is a Station pass. Unfortunately or fortunately I already had one :P