When Rogue One set the new bar of fan interest in Star Wars (the only recent phenomenon would be Baby Yoda, which ironically actually plays into everything fans hated about the prequels, but let's just continue to pretend otherwise), it was really like a slap in the face to everything that had come before.
But let's explain that, shall we?
George Lucas didn't exactly go out of his way to explain the nature of the Rebel Alliance. The version we saw in A New Hope, The Empire Strikes Back, and Return of the Jedi was basically an army that continually fought against the Empire, no matter how mismatched they seemed to be.
The version of the Rebel Alliance as envisioned by Rogue One and its prequel series Andor is at best akin to the French Resistance during WWII, and at worst the Arab insurgencies we typically call terrorists, because they just like to blow things up.
The version of the Rebel Alliance presented by Lucas was very much in the spirit of the American Revolution, a war fought on conventional terms. Lucas himself envisioned Star Wars as a response to the Vietnam War, although he didn't go out of his way to make the point. The North Vietnamese did not fight a conventional war. (Nor did the Taliban, or the Iraqis. If anyone would bother to remember how the wars with Native American tribes actually played out, we'd see some actual parallels in history.) That's why it was such a difficult war to fight, why it dragged on for years, because it was impossible to achieve any real objectives.
The Rebel Alliance engaged the Empire when and where it needed to, fighting on the Empire's terms.
Lucas never really showed what life was like under the Empire. We saw Darth Vader, we saw the hooded Emperor, we saw military leaders, we saw Stormtroopers. We saw leaders of individual worlds working with the Rebellion, though they hid their allegiances as much as possible.
We in essence saw a very small portrait of what life was actually like. We saw a world that seemed totally untouched by the Empire. We saw another with a thriving business economy that made a deal with the Empire and was left with a permanent garrison, which meant the loss of autonomy.
We saw so very little.
We saw smugglers working independently, whose rough lives were totally untouched except for attempts to check their activities by the Empire.
We saw the Imperial Academy as a viable path for youths in search of a future. We saw the Rebellion as a romantic ideal. We saw old heroes hiding away for years. We saw the offspring of Vader hiding from him, from the Emperor. We saw the Jedi reduced to the idea of some old religion in the span of only a few decades, both by ordinary people and even those interacting with a remnant within the Empire itself.
Wev saw an Empire really only interested in control, but leaving powerful regional gangsters in play.
We saw the Rebellion with its own fleet, however small in comparison, hiding away at one location or another, striking out even against the most feared weapons of the Empire.
We did see the Empire use such weapons against entire worlds. We saw that only the Rebel Alliance seemed at all concerned about this. But genocidal tyrants are surely known for their outrages.
We didn't see any efforts to topple the Emperor from power from within.
That would be interesting to see.
We didn't see the Rebels acting as terrorists.
But somehow that's how fans are starting to see them in their preferred new circumstances. I have a problem with this.
All the complaints about what Lucas did, what J.J. Abrams, what Rian Johnson did, did they ever fundamentally alter the Star Wars saga? Did they change the basic character of the good guys?
If you want to explore the story in ways that haven't been seen before, do it in ways that don't destroy the story.