I think that this question really can be answered rigorously with good analysis. It is opinion-based, but not completely since some results in this direction can be obtained, and strict and general guidelines can be given, along with good heuristics and reasons for the advantage of one or the other side. So, let us go straight to the description of a question.
Some of you wrote about some system of points I really did not know of, that assigns values to figures, according to their "strength". Of course, it all depends on the positions in the game and on the tactics and strategies, but, I have a legal question to ask.
Suppose that two players are starting the game, and that they are equally good (in this context, meaning that all the strategies that one player knows of the other one knows too, and vice-versa). One is starting the game without 8 pawns and with a queen, and the other one is without a queen and with 8 pawns. Who, generally, has the advantage?
[FEN "rnbqkbnr/8/8/8/8/8/PPPPPPPP/RNB1KBNR w - - 0 1 "]
I think that this can answer this can be determined through very rigorous and sufficient analysis. It seems also that there is a tendency to favor the side with a queen and without pawns, but I do not see exactly why, and do not understand the reason for that?
Can it be explained, with sufficient analysis of the problem, the main issues of both sides, with givem heuristics about what would (or should) happen later in the game? Is there really a real advantage for one side, and why?
Edit: Now, after some thinking, I am of the opinion that this question is harder than it might seem to be, and, although much can be written and said about this starting configuration, I think that general consensus will not be so easy to establish. I am of the opinion that the White one is, generally, in advantage, but am unsure on how to prove that, and, someone with much more experience and games behind him/her could obtain some precise and thorough analysis. If someone is in close contact with masters of chess, and can ask them about an opinion, we could be closer to some conclusions. As for me, the more I think about this problem, the more hard it becomes to me.