If the game is fun all around, I’ll keep it. The difficulty of reaching/beating the Wizard mode is not the deciding factor.
In addition to some of the well known “deep games” I still own games like TAF, AFM for example because I enjoy them; the wizard modes are certainly not considered difficult. Many people reach those wizard mode multiple times in a game.
There is this increasing emphasis on deep code as is if that correlates to more fun. I think a lot of the games have objectives that are absurdly repetitive, or hard for the sake of being hard. Sadly, the journey is usually not rewarding-how often do we see the phrase “wood chopping.”
To make it worse, after chopping a forest, and without naming games (and starting a game/coder debate), I’ve reached a few wizard modes and said, “that’s it?” Now to be clear, it’s obvious that most design should focus on front end candy. But my point is the reward is often not commensurate with the effort to get there and the journey not that fun.
At first I am usually focused on reaching “the goal”. After a while I can gauge if it’s reachable with my skill set. Then I start more critically looking at the other basic features.
The best games are ones where you finish and tell yourself “wow, so close, I gotta try that again”