Another aspect of Win 95, kinda lost now, was it was fun. The Plus! cd packed in all these themes that actually worked, changing fonts, icons, colors, wallpaper, screensaver, and (my favorite) system sounds to an aquarium, a haunted house, sports, and other cool time-wasting stuff. The aquarium screensaver was quite impressive. Sure it ate some CPU, but by the time Pentium 133's were common, who cared? Some of the system sounds from that era I still keep around and plug into Windows, 'cause some of them were just plain well done.
One of my ongoing beefs with Microsoft is how, with each release, they take more of this away. I didn't mind "Luna" on XP, at least not in principle, but they only released 3 possible colors (plus a black Zune theme if you could find it). Otherwise, Luna was locked down (although "classic" was still available).
It got worse from there. On a lot of systems, you have to go through a lot of settings to get Aero to start working even if you have adequate display hardware, and once it's working there's not much you can do with it. Moreover, these things they call "themes" in Windows 7-10 aren't themes at all - they're little more than a wallpaper (albeit a pretty one). Little else can be changed. You have to go skinning or buy Windows Blinds to do anything close to what Windows 95 offered with Plus!, and these methods involve messing with system files which Win 10's mandatory system updates may well wipe out on a regular basis.
Windows 95 was a product that Microsoft was determined to make people want to use on a PC at home. But the guys behind it have probably all retired with their stock options, and the new people figure you'll buy Windows 'cause you just have to. Fuck having fun, give us your ID, your browsing history and your shopping habits. Click on this live tile, watch this ad. Buy a tablet and a phone, so we can track where you're at. It's been 20 years since Windows 95 and we got TELEMETRY!