I agree that there isn't a lot of difference optically between most of the better brands of riflescopes these days. Where the main differences lie is in the features and weight. If I was wanting a lightweight scope Nikon wouldn't be my first choice as their 3-9 Buckmaster comes in about 30% heavier than a Leupold VX2 3-9 and almost 50% heavier than the Ultralight model. To me there is a lot more to compare than price and power range. The top two choices for lightweight optics IMO is Swarovski and Leupold, and the Swaro's are out of my price range.
To a lot of people weight isn't a real consideration and for my varmint/target rifles it isn't as well. Most of my non hunting rifles use other optics than Leupold. The majority of my rifles that get hunted on a regular basis wear Leupold VX-II or better, and the are worth every penny I spent on them.