Someone asked a question on the RPG Site several days ago: "Does good game design really matter?"
The thread quickly became a stupid argument about whether an inherently subjective opinion could secretly be objective, but to that original question, I say, "Hell no!" The shift to so-called "game design" was one of the worst things to happen to RPGs.
I mean, look at the history of D&D. It didn't start with "game design", it started with Dave Arneson saying "hey, instead of re-creating a historical battle or battles from Tolkien, let's have an adventure!" Everything at first was a house rule or re-purposed mechanic from some other game. That continued to be true when Gygax came into the picture; he was perhaps more systematic, but there's still very little "game design" in the sense of fretting over balance issues or fine-tuning progression rates or setting up synergies or whatever the latest jackass thing is that people are talking about.
As Michael Mornard described it in many a forum thread: "We made shit up that we thought would be fun". I wish RPGs would return to that principal of "game design".
And P.S.: I do not want to see yet another "resolution mechanic". Mechanics are the least important part of the game. All the good ones have been thought of already, and you can substitute one for another with very little effect. They are crap. And a waste of time, because anytime someone comes up with a new resolution mechanic, the next thing they do is post on some forum: "can someone help me with the probabilities behind this new resolution mechanic?" Here, let me help you: Your probabilities suck. Go back to one of the old standards.