One of my favorite inspirational game development videos is this 15-minute nugget of goodness from Martin Jonasson and Petri Purho. In it, they take a bland Breakout clone and turn it into something that has an amazing... feel... to it. (I don't know if there's a word that captures what I'm talking about!)
I often cobble together game designs that have an intrinsic appeal, but the delight a player might get is buried beneath layers of abstraction, and useful metaphorical handles are obscured or non-existent.
When I'm at that point -- the game is good but doesn't sell itself -- I watch this video and smile at the huge number of ways a simple concept can be made Awesome.
For lots of related links, including the source code used on stage, check out the article on Rock Paper Shotgun.
And watch the video.