I don't mind "minimalistic" UI if the game is minimalistic to begin with or to kick out most of the possibly distracting elements in a view with many depths of layers. Two examples:
GTA IV in Online mode only had 4 things and one in each corner, area name when prompted, weapon & bullets, small map and notifications of important actions when prompted too; all small enough to have a wide view.
Forza Motorsport 3 is still one of the best made clean UI interfaces and mind boggling it could never be replicated in terms of polish after 10 years, the customized car previews even look pre-rendered due to how good it was.
Minimalistic no-identity UI inside a stylized game like Zelda, Mortal Kombat or God of War i find very little justifications to do that tho, seem like placeholder assets that were never replaced to me. The more people you put in a project the more chances you have for someone to not like something so it all dumbs down to the common denominator thing that makes people the least mad, at least if you don't have a unified creative head team calling the shots, in corporative game making that exists but it's only symbolic, the real bosses there are the HR fags and the timekeeper managers.
>Apple-buying cattle crowd
lol, it can fall down to that too, some fags think some of that stuff distracts rather than add to the vibe. And like many problems it is the context, the area where many games are made, Silicon Valley, is the biggest Apple cattle grazing area in the world so it's like putting some fruit near the bad fruit and expect the normal ones not to degrade. Or should i say apples?