Well I wont get into the debate about dreams and reality, but I do have a similar sentiment to the OP regarding physical copies of games when it comes to the point of view of a collection.
It's nothing extravagant. But for some reason it speaks to me. I've had it on display on one of my shelves for 15 years now. And every time I glance over at it, it brings back a little bit of the feeling I had when I played the game as a kid, and the memories I have associated with it. Including the store I went to to buy the game, the snowstorm outside, and how much of a hurry I was in to get home in order to play it. And seeing it there, knowing that there's a physical copy inside still in mint condition, I like that. And now 15 years later, I have a copy of the 3DS remake sitting next to it.
I can sort of agree to some extent, I used to be a guy who only bought physical copies and only loved physical (I too as even there touting my distaste for digital only gaming and how expensive it was at the time) but over the years things became more convenient for me, prices were cheaper and of course on my platform of pref I mod my games so modding a disk isn't really an option for me, especially since the game is then installed and I have no need to use said disk until I use a new rig.
There was also a time where I had my physical boxes all nicely lined up but after years and years the collections started gathering dust, getting scuffed from re-arranging my room/moving places and eventually I reached a point a few times where I was down on my luck with money and had to pawn off my physical games/dvd's, of course I had attachments to them but I also have really big attachments to all my pets, my cat died last Nov and I was devastated that I had to have him put down and had to bury him that same day, the fact that he's physically gone still upsets me but I know at the end of the day that physically I'll have to sell what I have, lose it or give it to someone else, in the case of my cat well he had to be buried like all people/pets since I'm not the type who wants to stuff him and place him atop my shelf for all to see (some people really go that far but I won't judge).
As for my games, the majority of them are digital and I always do reminisce about fond memories I've had of games I once played/still play simply by looking at trailers, cutscenes, listening to their OST's or simply seeing the Steam game banners, I don't really function in a way where I need to touch an object to know about it or get fond memories rushing back, I get those sorts of memories all the time, hell I still can't believe it;s been 4, nearly 5 years since I played Skyrim on my 360 followed by the early days of Google+ beta, sure I can't touch any of that but I;m happy enough to contain said memories and talk about them with friends, even while playing old games with friends do I get the fondest of memories, I managed to recently find a site that allowed me and a mate of mine to play C&C Red Alert 3, Kane's Wrath, Generals, Generals ZH, C&C 3 etc online once more with hundreds of other folk (EA/Gamespy cut their support years ago) and just sitting in the lobby of a game that's supposed to have dead online brings back so many memories and all this is digital.
I think if anything my external drive is probably the most important physical object to me since it contains a good portion of my games, all my photos I've taken over the years, wallpapers, music and the like that also spark memories of times long passed and for me I don't really need to touch any of those to get the nostalgic feelings, not everyone does mind you since you operate differently from me, I used to be like you as I said before but times change and I changed after a number of years to go from physical gaming to an all digital one.