Truth be told I never completed the original COH game, although I still play it from time to time and do some AI bot stomp scenarios for quick and dirty blog filler material. I do have a desire to ultimately complete that game as it was well designed and challenging to a degree. After playing through the first single player mission as the Soviets during the Battle of Stalingrad, I cannot say the same here.
That first mission plays similar to the first mission in the original game (the D-Day landings on Omaha Beach). In this game, the Soviets are unloading troops from the ferries on the Volga River and the player must zerg rush them forward to take out a phalanx of MG nests, heavy artillery pieces and Panzers. For some reason it just felt like the whole process lacked the soul of the first game/mission.
I am glad Steam has this on a free play weekend, because this has helped me to not make the mistake of buying the base game (all the bells and whistles content has to be purchased separately as add on packs, a terrible business decision for the COH legacy to end on). From this very brief introduction to COH 2 I can firmly say that if I ever do pick it up, it will be down the road when the whole package is marked down to $4.99.
A lot of work has gone into this game (it is easy to tell), but it just does not come off as anything remotely deserving the COH label.