I guess I wasn't factoring the glue/brush/paints into it, but I'd tend to get those separately - I'm probably unusual in this, but even before I started gaming those sorts of things I could have found around the house anyway.
I will also admit that for GW's uses, their models tend to be too nice for what I want. I will freely acknowledge that I'm not a good painter, and for my rank and file for building a full army I actually kind of want models that are simpler and have bigger areas that I can do in a single colour etc. Broadly speaking I often found that older models were better for that, the newer plastics tended to be more high detail and more finicky to paint, which I'm prepared to do for a skirmish warband or for my heroes but not for the grunts so much.
And I take your point on inflation - the counter-issue is to what extent people's incomes have kept pace with inflation (which they broadly have done since the mid 1990s, but many haven't done from, say, 2008-present, which is about the period over which I've been paying any attention to developments in wargaming). Were the 1990s models plastic multiparts like the modern ones? I know fantasy far better than 40K and all my warmachines for that were still metal when I started gaming.
Agreed on the point creep issue, entirely. Don't know about specialist games as a whole, but some better WHFB skirmish rules being available would be no bad thing (I'd even support bringing back Mordheim, but then again I think that Mordheim is probably the best GW game I've played so that's hardly a shock).