I think those on the forums have an unrealistic sense of what is competitive versus what is actually the case.
We all talk about how many poorly built bases we encounter… Have you considered that is mostly because the majority of players are not on the forums?
Personally, I think most forum regulars have unrealistic expectations of what is normal and what is competitive… Most of you seem to think that any base that deviates more than a few tower levels from perfect is somehow not competitive. But let’s be real. Divine dragons are so power that you can take bases that are how many levels above you? So, is that base somehow not competitive? Or are the dragon just the dominating factor? Or are you just that good?
Can you win your war and atlas attacks with a backer? OK, then you’re competitive.
It’s about teamwork. Can you hold them to four flames with two defenders (at least some of the time)? Then you’re competitive.