No one can build and use the major features of Atlas in neutral zones. This reasoning is so poor, neutral zones do not adequately allow small teams to build and be competitive.
I am fortunate to be part of a very good team who work hard and have bases which can be defended. I really feel so sorry for sapphire teams without a “big” starting in Atlas, you are asking them to climb a mountain without shoes. Sure they might be able to establish a base in an unpopular area and put a lot of resources into it. The current setup encourages a situation where the island(s) get smashed in an hour, forcing the team back to the joyful neutral zone because someone in an established team gets bored and has a month of troops to use. Please tell me how many times you think 50 people can go through that and not have someone get upset and frustrated at the waste of effort and stunting their growth.
I don’t blame the established teams (of which I guess all of diamond is now) for wanting to crush smaller teams. It’s hard enough for the enormous number of people trying to build glory and level primarchs without breaking alliances etc., to not take “soft targets”, which the current system allows. I freely admit that it is likely I will consider doing exactly this myself to earn prizes. There should be some form of protection for newer teams or less incentive for unbalanced “soft target” attacks. I realise this not an easy proposal with a quick fix, but some constructive dialogue would be appreciated rather than “if you are not competitive, don’t use this part of the game”.