To put it simply, this new map basically has given full control of the map to the mega alliances. By removing the majority of claimable islands without reducing a companies total island points, the devs have basically given this game to the megas. The last time I check, all but 3 islands had been claimed...3 days in. There is nothing left for small companies to claim. Meanwhile, huge companies like Slick Daddy Company currently control 8 islands. Then there is the huge influx of people coming over from the PVE servers adding island deficiency.
Smaller companies can't get established if they have no where to go. Small companies with an island can't get built up when they are constantly having to fight off other companies trying to take the island because there is nothing left. It creates a lose-lose for anyone who isn't part of a mega alliance, and it basically forces everyone to either chose to submit their autonomy for protection or deal with constant waves of attacks.
This update did NOT make the game more survivable and enjoyable for smaller companies...it did the opposite of that.
Adding to all of this, the new layout made it super easy for the mega companies to reach endgame and be over powered. 3 days in, and the megas already have mytho gallies, crabs, mytho gear, etc. and are using that to wipe anyone they don't want around. How is a company of less than 20 people supposed to stand against a mega company of 60+ ppl with crabs and mytho gear. All on day 3...
This is a fun game with a lot of promise. However, if something isn't done soon to address the balance of power and make this game survivable, it will fail. No one wants to play a game where their choice is to either get wiped constantly or join some huge company of randos. Dev's please address balancing this game. Please cap companies at no more than 2 or 3 islands. Please give players a grace period to get defenses built on islands. Please do something to break the mega alliances up so that 4 big groups can't control the whole map. Please make griefing a bannable offense. If you want this game to succeed you NEED to make it so that people can hop in and have fun, meaningful game play without constantly having to worry about getting wiped and losing everything simply because they arn't part of a mega company.