I am a person who played all of the old forgotten champs, Yorick, Urgot, Aatrox that sort of thing. Recently Riots reworks have felt like they removed the character entirely and replace them with different character. Yorick and Warwick reworks were fantastic. For example, what made Yorick fun to play was the ghouls. The fact that Riot kept the ghouls but added counterplay shows that they understood what made Yorick, Yorick. Since Galio it feels like Rito just said "fuck it no one plays them, lets just not care." I don't think incorperating vague similarities are the same as keeping aspects of the champ in tact. Galio's mr scaling is not the same as getting ap for mr. Urgot having targeting is basically non existent. This post is focusing on how they play and not anything on lcs. The most important thing to a game is the fun to the playerbase, I am discussing this from that perspective.
Galio was a mage who scaled with MR. His Q was a damage spell and his e was too. His ultimate was an amazing and fun nunulike ult with a taunt. They removed his ult and put it on his resistance but it is not the same. They removed the flat ap for mr and replaced it something barely similar. Galio is not the same feel and plays entirely differently. Even going ap mid is not the same. I feel as annoyed as I do with urgot even though I dont have much to say.
Urgot is worse. Urgot has the problem is that he was a ad caster while also being a fighter. The main fun aspect of him was his ad caster. Spamming his q like a mage was fun and what made him interesting to me. His ult was funny and interesting but i understand why it doesnt work for him. There are no ad ability focus characters that is played like a mage. His old targeting system feels nothing like his new targeting system, in fact his new system doesnt even feel like targeting. Since his old q was his main damage tool and was blocked by minions, the targeting the e provided made you bypass the minions and gave it extra range. It felt like a targeting system. Since his w now is an auto attack base spell and he is wants to be on top of them, it feels like he is just auto attacking and not targeting. The lack of range and the fact that there is not visible change in the spells pre and post target, makes it feel like the targeting was just removed. They just made him a generic juggernaut that focuses on autos, which to me old urgot focused on least.
Eve I can not comment on because i never played old ev that much. The spikes feel similar enough and the passive now has counterplay early game. This one feels right.
Swain is not as horrible as urgot but it just doesn't feel right. Old Swain focused on using his free df passive to get the most out of his q. His focus on Lightning is not the same as his focus on his tether. His cc turned from an aoe root to a weird passthrough single root. The free mana is sad for me to see gone. The only thing that feels the same is his ult. It is fun but it is similar enough that I am not as annoyed.
I disliked old irelia for being one of the most annoying champs to fight so I never picked her up.
Aatrox is on the same level as Urgot when it comes to removing a champ and replacing them with someone new. Aatrox was a fun and weird champ with a unique skillshot, a three hit passive that shifts its purpose on a triggered ability and a cool dash/knockup. The attackrange increase on his ult was extremely interesting. His heal was cool because it only activated after three hits while also risking damage. His q being a decreasing hitbox was fun and the only spell like it. His ult only getting the revive when his bloodwell was full was an interesting way to balance a free ga. His e dash was more interesting. It felt like it had some weight to it and some dedication, the knock up on the end made it feel rewarding to go in. His rework changed everything from his playstyle to how his attributes worked. His new playstyle is focused on stacking his q instead of autoing. His Heal is now just a free deaths dance with no interesting gimmick to make it interesting. His knockup is now on his q and not tied to his cool dash. His dash is now just a little kalista dash. Having a repeating aoe spell is not as interesting. It feels entirely different to play.
Kayle feels the same late game but weird early.
~~Morde is not out yet but the videos show that he is not the same at all. His q is not a powerful feeling three hit auto. generic spell. His shield managing is not longer the mechanic but just a normal shield. his Ghost, the most unique part of his kit is gone. I love his new ult is amazing. I loved old poppy ult and sending people to the shadowrealm is rad as hell but why did they decide to replace it? I will probably love new morde but it is not the same.~~
Reworks that feel the same are possible. Yorick and Warwick are fantastic reworks that kept the most important aspects of the character in tact. The focus on making a new character instead of a true rework is a blemish on a great game like this. I am not advocating for Unworks only, a new 3rd rework for most of these champs can be made to align them with how the old ones played. I tried to not sound whinny here but I am working with emotions on this.
Edit: from what yall are saying about morde I can see I was wrong. The revert nature of it is honorable of riot. I am glad they did it now.