Well, the Start Menu still exists in the File Structure, and it’s still completely referenced in the Registry - or at least, the comparable entries are there like XP, V and Win7.
Microsoft simply refuses to let the applet that displays it exist. But obviously it HAS existed.
It’s like their ultimate backdoor escape route - “If all else fails!” But it also opens up all the 3rd Party offerings. I just don’t know why, though. Why other with giving those groups such a tiny nibble? Is this some enticement into the WinStore World of transaction and usage tracking?