Probably a bit of both, it’s a radical idea. Anyway, the First Order being the underdogs is how i felt they should have been when i first saw TFA in the cinema and i never liked Starkiller base. It was only reinforced with the poor world-building of the series.
Starkiller base would have to be a normal planet, an icy world with a FO base. In this version it also makes more sense that the New Republic views the FO not as a threat, because they don’t have a planet-sized superweapon, but are just brutalizing peasants in the Inner Rim. Otherwise the Republic navy should have bombed them into oblivion long ago.