Is that really reality though? I'm not convinced that reality would play out this way. The inventor has the advantage of being first to market, this gives a significant advantage and allows them to establish a market for their brand. Brand etc all has value, and being first to marked and establishing a brand continues to give the inventor an advantage over the competition. This also encourages the inventor to continue to innovate to remain ahead of their competitors - which is a natural motivator for innovation.
People will invent and will innovate regardless of if a patent system is in place or not - I think that the concept of "recoup your costs" is probably better described as "making an absolute disproportionate shit load", and this is half the problem with our world right now - organisations don't want to recoup costs, they want it all, every dollar, every person has and the patent system is just one more tool that is being wielded to achieve that goal.
Sure there will be cases where this doesn't fit well, but there are also many cases where the current patent system doesn't fit well. It's not simple choosing which way is best.