Recently I've been playing Remedy's Control, and I'm struck by how many times I've found myself running up to desks and opening chests to find yet another page of lore or dull, unimaginative modification. While I did like reading some of the files, I don't want to stop every few minutes to pull up the menu to look at them. It's not just Control either, with games like God of War 2018, Nier: Automata, Batman: Arkham Knight having far too much to collect. I know you don't have to get this stuff, by since my brain has been conditioned by so many years of gaming to "get the shiny thing" I compulsively do so. The two biggest issues with getting rewarded so often is that the rewards themselves feel so bland and disposable, and the frequency at which they will pull you attention away can disrupt big important story moments.
I remember in Batman: Arkham Knight where the game wanted me to walk up to a body with a tarp over it for a big dramatic reveal, yet I immediately ignored it after spotting the familiar green glow of a Riddler challenge, because getting a little trophy took priority over whatever the story wanted to show me. A relatively new game that did collectibles right in my eyes was Hollow Knight. The badges provided the player with small but interesting ways to play the game and they could also be combined to change the gameplay even further. I know people criticise Hollow Knight for the way it drip feeds you abilities and the like, but I rather be rewarded with fewer but more meaningful and impactful collectibles.
Am I alone in thinking this? Do people just like having tons of things to collect? Do developers really believe we will drop a game if we don't have something to hold the collect button over every minute?