The old Aatrox was a one-dimensional shallow piece of shit that was only good at one thing and had little to no versatility. I've played him quite a bit, ever since his release, and got proficiency 7 last season, and I'm not even sad he's gone.
One-dimensional one-trick ponies are for 450 IP (or blue essence, as we call it nowadays) champions. This is Ashe, Garen, Master Yi, Annie territory - no flexibility, versatility, and adaptability. If you meet a wild Zed in the bush as Ashe, you're fucked. No possible genius combination of any of your abilities will save you. But you're the best at applying constant CC out of all ADCs, and this is the only thing you will ever be good at. This is one of the reasons she's 450.
Old, old Aatrox was definitely not 450, but played like one. You auto-attack things: The End. Your Q was there so you can auto attack things. Your W is there so your auto attacks are special. Your E is there so you don't catch cancer from everyone kiting you too hard, which will allow you to auto attack some more things if you catch up to them. I'll concede that his E was the only thing that allowed his laning and pushing speed to not be absolute horseshit, but it was a rather insignificant part of his kit. It was there just so you won't be too dogshit in lane. And finally, his R is there so you can auto-attack things faster. Sounds like Master Yi with no movement speed bonus and a revive. Yes, that's what he was.
I tried so hard to make that piece of shit work. I think I understood how he was "meant" to be played - you're some edgy nerd who wields a really edgy blade and you love "massacre". You're supposed to dive in the middle of 5 enemies, pop your ult off, slash your sword really fast and leech life off and revive again. The problem was that he was completely stat-dependent, and if you lacked the attack speed, HP, levels, and AD, you were worthless and a Master Yi would have done the job better. I don't call this good design, and me and other people really only played him for the style points.
The new Aatrox still has the same concept: you're really edgy and you want to massacre things, so you dive in and wield your big sword and leech life off and revive. Except now, he has more versatility in how he goes about doing it. Long ago, you had to pray your Q landed on someone. If it didn't, you had to pray you would get 5 stacks before you died. Now, if your Q misses, you still have 2 more. You don't have to worry about stupid stacks that expire in 0.1 seconds. You don't have to toggle on a leech, which was pretty fucking stupid and it was hard to tell, even after 500 games, which W I had toggled on in the middle of a team fight. Now, you have multiple sources of CC, and you're not fucking worthless if you miss your Q on the enemy carry late game. Best of all, you actually get bonus movement speed now as a melee character.
You'd have to be actually pretty clueless to bash on the new Aatrox. If you didn't see the similarities, then you can't see the broader qualities of champion design. Yes, none of his abilities except for his revive remained. Take a wild guess why. The old Aatrox had NOTHING except auto-attacks. Why are you shocked that the new Aatrox has nothing the old Aatrox had, when the old Aatrox had NOTHING?