It's not the "elitists" that are the problem, it's the people acting like striving to be the best is a bad thing.
I don't get it. Every time I see people talk about the leaderboards, people talk about elitists. "Oh, they're acting like their strategies are some big secret!" "They're not that good, anyone can do the same thing they're doing." "They're just being mean for no reason." All this talk about how trying to get the best times is making Trove worse. You know what? I don't see the people at the top trying to undermine the accomplishments of other posters. The guy that got a stack of Jumping Jadefins? They didn't start throwing shade at him because "anyone can do that", or "he's hoarding all those fish for himself, how selfish".
You want to know why they don't trash on other people on the forums, and the ever so kind members of the community talking about "toxicity" and "elitism" do? It's because the top players know they've put in the work to get to where they are, and they've earned it. Everyone else hasn't, and the people that are going to emerge and get to the top next are going to be too busy putting in that same work to drag the forums down with such "generosity" and "community sharing".
"They're elitists for acting like their 'big secrets' are worth keeping to themselves!" Apparently they are, considering they're at the top. If they figured out the optimal strategy to get the best times, they deserve the best times. If they want to keep it for themselves, that's their right to do so. They put in the theorycrafting work to figure out their plans, why should they hand them to every Joe Casual on a silver platter?
"They keep kicking people just because they aren't elitists like them!" Because they aren't elitist, or not elite? If someone doesn't measure up on a team trying to accomplish the goal of getting first place, they don't say "oh it's okay we'll carry you with us to second place", the weak link either steps up or gets told to step down. Go to a professional team in any game, and see if not putting in 100 percent is going to keep you around for long.
"They're not doing anything to help out the guy just starting Trove! They're not helping the little guy progress - instead they put all their effort on those toxic leaderboards!" If you have an important meeting, are you going to stop to hold the door open for the 9 people coming your way, including the one guy taking a leisurely stroll to the door? People need to climb up the ladder themselves. The people on top are the ones that are having to push their own way forwards, and they have the skills and experience to show for it.
"They're also being mean on the forums!" Yeah, and it's almost always the precious defenders of all that is good and totally not toxic that start it. If you start talking crap about other people's accomplishments, especially on a public forum, don't get all upset and bothered when you reap what you sow. And even so, not everyone's going to the forums to be part of some happy community, especially when the happy community is saying "don't disagree or say anything ungood or you're TOXIC."