I think you hit the nail on the head. I think that a lot of collectors eventually move from buying everything that's rare to buying things that are just plain cool and that they can appreciate.
The last big, rare, hyped thing I bought was the Ruby Fives and I don't even like ruby, pol. black or have a relation to this sport.
I still collect rare stuff, but mostly rare stuff that's not that looked at by the masses - it has to fit in my collection and I have to like it...again - my emerald, crosshair and Stretch stuff *lol - repeating that again and again is getting annoying, correct ;) ? Sorry!