Yes, that's why I'm posting about this and "escalating" it like this. To be honest, it took me a whole month before I even realized that this is happening. You may indeed not even notice it and if you never will - good for you.
This is the first drive that does this to me and the last one I bought before that (less than 2 years ago) is also a Seagate, I still have it and it's my primary drive and doesn't do this so what's the difference? Well, the old one if from the 7200.12 generation and the new one that does this crap is from the new 7200.14 generation. Chances are you either really don't notice it (which is possible) or you might have bought drives that are just not THAT new. I've heard that apparently some manufacturers (WD) sometimes don't even change the model number if they go from 3-platter to single-platter versions so this could easily be implemented "behind the curtain".
Did the manufacturers overlook it? No. So why are they doing this? My theory - 2 reasons:
1. Because if it does that, it consumes less power so they're allowed to advertise it as eco-friendly and this boosts sales for people who prefer such products.
2. Because it can kill your drive faster and when it does you need a new one so more money to them. Or, as WD told me, just buy a Red drive from them which of course is more expensive so as you see - they just want my money.
Normally, I boot up my PC once a day so the drive uparks and park the head back in the evening as I turn it off. That means it does one "load cycle" (unpark/park). There's a limited amount of times a drive can do that, but if it's 2-3 per day, you're good for decades, but when it parks the head every 5 seconds of inactivity, if you access stuff a lot from this drive, you can easily do 50-100 load cycles per day so again - drive dies, you need a new one = they profit.
Now, as for your question about the game - by "inactivity" I mean the time it takes for the drive to think "nothing happens, I'm going to sleep" and that is about 5 seconds. So when a game loads everything and I sit in one place, if it won't read stuff for 5 seconds, the drive powers down and next time the game wants something from it it must power up and this isn't what I would consider a healthy power up where it has the time to spin up and un-park like when you turn on your computer, nope, this is the kind of power-up where it needs to IMMEDIATELY get data as soon as it can so the head just jumps to the sector instantly which sometimes may even sound very concerning... and that's the "click" that people sometimes hear and don't know what it is.
As I've researched this, I've found a lot of people complaining about a clicking noise in their drives and sure, in some cases, this is indeed something faulty with the drive, but I knew this click and that's how I've searched deeper and found out what's really goign on because frankly, I would have NEVER though that a desktop-class drive would do this. It's great for laptops where you save battery life and when the head is parked, it's safer when you move the computer, but on a desktop? Makes no sense.
About how long it takes to spin-up - I'd say somewehre between 1-2 seconds so yes, it can spin-up fast, of course it would be ridiculous if they would have designed it with a low spin-up time because then really everyone would notice this, but still - these 1-2 seconds in a game that needs to load a texture can be bad. Most games won't have a problem with that, textures are loaded in advance, they utilise the memory on your graphics card, your RAM so that's why it took me a month to realize it and it was actually the click that raised my concern because I thought that Saits Row is simply broken, but after knowing what happens I went back to Saints row after disabling the power management and low and behold - no problems at all.
The worst thing about this is that it doesn't care about your system's power management, that is - I have disk spin-down set to never, always had, but it doesn't matter, it ignores this setting.
Oh and another reason why I think they do it and people don't realize is that SSDs are popular as drives for yoru operating system. If I would use this crippled drive as my primary... damn, I don't even want to think about it - every time Windows needs a file, it needs 1-2 seconds for the drive to spin-up, but since people have their OS on an SSD, they just dump media files on a mechanical drive and if you just use this for movies, for example - that's fine - you won't notice that it takes extra 1-2 seconds to open the file and the movie reads constantly so it won't spin-down in the middle, but games are "special" in this matter and some may indeed not need the drive for some time, but if they will - we have a problem.. if a game thinks the drive it wants to read from is not responsive... weird things can happen.