There is currently a discussion on Blender’s bf-committers mailing list to make OpenGL 2.1 a minimum requirement for running Blender. This would also affect the BGE (maybe not right away, but eventually). Right now there are very few (if any) voices against bumping the minimum OpenGL version. If you would like to voice an opinion on the mater, I would recommend responding to the mailing list thread.
One of the main advantages for (and why I am in favor of) bumping up the minimum required OpenGL version is we can get rid of code that exists as a fallback to older devices. This simplifies development since we are guaranteed support for certain features (VBOs, shaders, FBOs, etc.).
I was very against dropping single texture mode, but since it’s gone, I can’t see anything bad about moving on to GLSL only.
If I want to make a non-GLSL game I’ll use another engine or download blender 2.49b (which is still a good version of Blender GE, very stable).
There’s no two ways about it, multitexture is useless. The lighting doesn’t work properly, animated textures don’t work, nodes don’t work, it’s only good for making games with no lighting. If I’m going to do that, I’d rather go back and use a copy of 2.49b with single texture.