Resource imbalances - low on coins, high on scrap, strong focus on gems
Although I have only played a few games, one bit of feedback I would like to offer is that, as many have said, the game is incredibly centered around gems in a way that I feel takes away from the potential amount of fun that could be had from the game. I have felt completely starved for coins such that coins (and the army you build from them) are useless.
I have had the experience that "merc-money" (gems) is the real center of the game. For the entirety of the game, I feel like I am battling over gems. Mercs give gems; merc camps house gem mines; the end-game units come from gems; gems are everywhere and at the center of battle; towers reward gems; and buildings cost gems.
In comparison, gold is used for just upgrades and units, you have absolutely no control over it (which means there is no fun that can be derived from it; no reward for accomplishing tasks for or with coins), and you get so little of it. From a design perspective, the current system of coins serves as a slightly dynamic in-game timer rather than a source of interest for the player - they are not a central mechanic of fun. However, I absolutely feel that they could be (gold mines, plz!), much like how gems are now.
Moreover, my first impression in my few games as I enter them has been "Oh, I immediately buy things with coins - cool, I like that and I seem to need coins for something. Therefore, I will want to get more coins." This hope for more coins is slowly crushed as the game wears on and I simply can't use coins because I don't have them and its out of my control. Instead, I find myself using gems and focusing on gems - sometimes completely forgetting the fact that there are coins in the game.
Finally, I feel that scrap is a weak and unstable resource at this current time. Scrap is used for mercs and teching and can be mined right off the bat. Seems good and logical, but what happens after you get your tech? There are six main tech items used for scrap - tier upgrades and merc compound upgrades. Unless you're experimenting with units (which is only for the first few games), you're only going to be gunning for 4 - either air or ground t3 merc tech. As soon as you have them, which is presumably very quickly, if you're gunning for a win, scrap becomes an absolutely moot resource. In many RTS's, the resources in the game are in constant use and can be spent in a wide variety of ways - there is always something that can be bought. However, scrap is not quite that way, at this point in time. Mercs are insanely cheap on scrap, and with the abundance of scrap resources right from the get-go (in limitless supply), once you've got what you're going for, scrap piles high and quickly. In all of my (again, few) games, I have run incredibly high on scrap while starving for coins and spending gems as quickly as I can.
POSITIVE THOUGHTS AND IMPROVEMENTS:
I love the gem system - I enjoy fighting over gems, strategically deciding when and where to be for gems, making critical decisions on which camps to go after, when to expand, what to defend, etc. I love the punish behind losing an expensive gem unit - it encourages micro and macro at the same time, with emphasis from one to the other as the game time increases. It's also somewhat unique to my moba/rts experience, which gives it a bit of charm and makes me want to find out how best to manage this interesting resource. Although it is very strong compared to the other resources, it feels good, which makes me think you guys have it on a great track.
I greatly enjoy resources that have to be fought over. It gives a sense of accomplishment and really makes me think about when, where, and how to attack. This delves me deep into the gameplay and is a central point of fun for me!
I love the simplicity. Normally in an RTS, a massive amount of strategy revolves around build orders. However, Atlas gives much greater focus to combat and positioning - when and where to rest control of resources - by having a very minimal amount of focus on buildings and upgrades. Although the order of units and what they are is critically important, I don't have to worry about building placements, building upgrades, or tech trees nearly as much and can instead focus on battle.
I have been an RTS/MOBA competitive gamer for years and am a game designer as well. That being said, I hope my feedback above helps point you guys in directions towards identifying and solving potentially difficult problem areas of the game. I apologize profusely for the length of this document. I have so much more to say, but I'll have to come back later. Sorry!
Keep up the good work and cheers, y'all!