Windows 8 would be fine if the Start Screen was moderately customizable. Even Windows 7's Start Menu was degraded - you could no longer custom-arrange folders, like you could in pretty much every other MS OS.
The Start Screen - if it allowed SubFolders - when clicked open's a blank Start Screen that you could organize. Assign a hotkey to said SubFolder. Instead we have a single Start Screen, and horizontal scrolling bullshit.
Even Stardock's Fences allows for multiple "desktops" as such - although that too doesn't allow you to organize your Fenced icons at all, making it nearly useless. Along with it's "pin a folder view to the desktop, which sounded really awesome... except it's just a crippled directory view with - yep - no sorting option or any of explorer's Menu's/or toolbars.
I've been testing out ReviverSoft's Start Menu Reviver 2. It's decent, but lacks in a few key areas:
No "normal" right-click context menu on the replaced start-button - which normally shows most of the utilities/tools that a power-user would need to access.
No way to customize where it appears; with a TaskBar on the left, it appears to the right. If one could make it appear on top of the TaskBar, and change the left-column buttons, it would allow for two clicks - without moving the mouse to still open the Start Screen --- instead click the replaced start button, move the mouse to find the Start Screen "button" - if yer actually trying to get to the start screen, instead of Reviver's start menu.
Or even allow assigning Shift+Win to display the Start Screen.
Other than that, I think it's probably better than Stardock's Start8 or even "classic-shell" which has far too many quirks.