the franchise in it's current incarnation had played out. There was and still is nothing more to do. But it seems to me, the constant campaigning against the show by some hardcore fans certainly didn't help. I watched every episode of it's run and yes, there were problems. The second season was pretty much horrible across the board. But I believe it was hitting it's stride by season 4. I do not think it should have continued tho. The current franchise needed to end. the universe had become so convoluted and there was so much established continuity that creating new adventures in that universe became problematic.
I hear this a lot... it's a fairly common refrain. I absolutely disagree with it, though. Since I don't recall ever saying this to YOU, I hope the rest of you will forgive me for repeating myself...
Consider films or TV shows which are, ostensibly, set in the "real world." The real world has FAR MORE "continuity" set up than the Star Trek universe has. Yet I've never heard anyone complaining that the real world is "used up" and you can't come up with any more stories in the real world (or, perhaps I should say, a reasonable facsimile intended to fool the audience into thinking that it's the same world they live in... just want to be clear).
Now, that's ONE PLANET (and for the most part, one COUNTRY, really)...
In the Federation, in TOS times, there are "a thousand worlds, and spreading out." Even ignoring shows taking place in space... that's easily 1000 times the PLANETBOUND STORYTELLING OPPORTUNITIES that we have with our own little planet.
Okay, so there are a dozen ships just like Enterprise in TOS times... that's not the same as saying "there are twelve starships, of any sort, in existence."
The problem isn't that there's "too much continuity" but that the writers grew too ATTACHED to the bits and piece of continuity that they created and became enamored of.
SO... for example... instead of dealing with NX-01 being hijacked by pirates of some other variety... they simply were TOO CLOSE TO THEIR OWN WORK to be able to think of any solution OTHER than "Ferengi."
That's not the fault of "too much continuity." In fact, it's really a violation of continuity (since nobody was supposed to know what Ferengi looked like...) Though it's possible to justify it with some fairly complicated mental gymnastics... the point is that it was a bad storytelling decision.
That's not the fault of "too much continuity." It's the fault of bad, lazy storytelling. Nothing more, nothing less.
Having continuity there doesn't mean you have to address it, often, or even address it at all. Just that you have to attempt to avoid CONTRADICTING IT.
Which, in a whole galaxy's worth of stories, shouldn't be difficult to do, should it be?