I like that you keep adding perspectives on this topic. You mentioned before what's great about patterns. We also discussed what's cool about making levels feel more wholesome in design. And this procedurally assisted workflow kinda blurs those interests, you can work very pattern oriented without looking much like that. The more diffuse properties of HD painted photoshop art make it flexible and forgiving enough to work well along that.
So let's see how that fits with pixel art. First we should try determine how much a clear recognition of patterns in pixel art is of similar satisfaction alike to the clarity of a limited colour palette. Can we have clearer patterns and colours, yet still enough unique variety? And as far as productivity is concerned, how much are manual or procedural mutually exclusive? Maybe there is a very manual workflow that has some kind of procedural property, in orderly control. Does the control of pixel art only bog you down? Does it make you necessarily unproductive? Is there a relevant creative opportunity in it? Is pixel art technique merely an implementational means to a greater vision of art, or can pixel art be a greater vision of itself? And is even boiling art down to pixel art a more meaningful creative challenge than just cleaning it up? Is there a design by pixel, or only a down to pixel. Is it shallow or deep? Is there a ceiling to your growth as pixel artist, can you only have a greater growth as artist? What's the priority of your potentials? Testing extremes, try an abstract piece, eliminate all art knowledge but pixel art technique. Can you think just pixel art, play pixel art, and still be excited and fulfilled?
In the past, we did pixel art for different reasons. The art was in not looking constrained as pixel art. For example, back in the day, there was no other way to look photorealistic than by pixel art technique. Nowadays we have plenty of much more straightforward alternatives to that. Pixel art no longer needs to look like something else. You just do something else. Rather what people try now is making something else look more like pixel art. And what does that "looking like" pixel art mean? Not a pixel art that tries to not look like it, but a pixel art that pronounces itself. This is the weird dichotomy we are facing today, and why many modern pixel art interpretations seem in some way a regression, compared to what was considered cutting edge pixel art before. Other than surviving as a challenge of itself, it advances in other ways, we are searching for what pixel art makes sense doing, in a way better than before, though not better in every way, since you don't depend on pixel art for that.