So I went trough the whole thread of the last community update on bnet and no one is talking about the 12 worker start. Most of the discussion is about lategame balance.
When you say Protoss matchup, which one do you mean? Because there are 2. The 12 worker start took out those boring 5 minutes at the start of each game because nothing happened in them. In very rare cases there was a proxy or cannon rush but those still exist today so those builds didn't die out. The 12 worker start did not hurt build orders in any way. It just made the startup phase of each game shorter which is a good thing because the first 5 minutes in HotS or WoL were the same in each game you played.
If you are talking about PvZ: While Protoss is expanding faster Zerg has also way more efficient untis with the Ravager, the new Hydra and the Lurker. So it is not that reliant on having a lot more economy than in previos iterations of SC2. If Protoss build a 3rd base early Zerg can easily counter with a ling attack because the defense of the Protoss at that point exists of maybe 2 Adepts which is not enough for 20 Lings. If anything Zerg is currently favored versus Protoss. The amount of cheeses and pushes is mostly the same. But the cheeses are played on one base and pretty easy to scout. Current pushes are Zealot-Archon, Resonating-glaive adepts, blink Stalker and Chargelot, With the exception of the Adept all of those existed already in HotS and all of them can be scouted with Overlord+Speedupgrade or some Zerglings around the Protoss Base.
Balance is also in a very good spot. No strategies exist that win you the game no matter what. There is always a possibility to fight back. In WoL Broodlord-Infestor was unbeatable because it had everything. Instant lockdown, lots of damage on ground and air. Its a good thing that does not exist anymore. Each army in LotV has its drawback regardless of race.
No competetive online game that works in real time is hack proof. Dota and League have hacks. Fortnite has some. And StarCraft will also always have some. But they have gotten way rarer. HotS was the worst point when it comes to hackers. LotV release broke all of the hacks and now new ones are coming up but Blizzard is still fighting them. Also just visited a hacker forum and they don't give away the hacks to the public. Only via pm on request. But please send me a PM where a working public hack for multiplayer is available. Because you can find a lot of singleplayer hacks. For those Blizz doesn't care. I have not encountered any hacker in my games ever. If it is such a rampant problem why haven't I found one yet? In fact I haven't heard anything about hackers from the German community. Neither pro players nor casuals.
So please I would love to know your side. And please be specific.
I'll dig up the prior discussions in CF threads later.
Saying that 12W cuts out 5 minutes of doing nothing is the same flawed notion David Kim had when he implemented the change, with 6W that period was actually the most influential because not only did decisions at this point impact the rest of the game but they carried equal amount of risk and reward for all players simply taking even just one gas slowed down your natural and would tip your opponent off that you weren't going for an expo but for tech or an attack which is why WOL and HOTS were heavily based around scouting this was the nature of the early game with 6w. With 12w start players start with near full mineral saturation and the reduced amount of workers n built in comparison to 6w are resources that go into getting a fast base up while the opening build is being executed and taking gases is not a hindrance leading to builds that weren't meant to be viable in SC2's design.
Each race was conceived and balanced around fundamental aspects as well as their own traits in SC2, Protoss was never designed to be fast expanding because their tech units and end game army is stronger in engagements than the other two this is seen in both WOL and HOTS where Protoss in each match up was always the last to expand they were always the slower to progress but when they get there hardest to deal with. Economy actually has a massive affect on balance this is why the previous 2 expansions had 6 worker start to put things in a basic manner every race being able to fast expand and such maybe the same economy resource wise but is not actual economically balanced as far as the races go as it ignores the fundamental design of each race. To highlight how this impacts the match ups (all of them as they all have problems) before when a Protoss went for a tech path they would only be able to dedicate on one particular comp or strat until they get 3 bases up minimum as each comp or strat would require a specific response from Terran or Zerg, with the boosted econ in LOTV Protoss have an added flexibility as well as the Nexus going down behind their opener for example Twilight Council can lead to 4 very different attacks that require very different responses to deal with otherwise you just die outright and now Protoss players can deviate between strats while an expo is going up meaning even if the attack does little damage they can still stay in the game just fine.
Lurkers are lair tech by the time you get them you can not punish a fast expanding Protoss with them because their expo would have already kicked in and they would have invested into units only way for Lurkers to even help in this situation is if you're doing a super all in strat which very likely wouldn't work due to the cuts you'd need to do to even attempt it, Ravagers against Protoss are a massive risk especially as the common Protoss openers Stargate and Robo counter them hard and with shield batteries in play not as many units are required to hold such pushes. Unlike Protoss pushes Zerg are far more all in. Balance isn't in a good spot as I've mentioned all 3 races have severe issues, Terran has a very poor late game leading to many Terrans on ladder doing 2 base all ins, Protoss is a roulette of random openers and cheese which you have to guess correctly or you die or they try to mass the near invincible Carrier army while Zerg has no composition diversity as they cannot deviate from the usual comps what so ever this leads to the chaos on the online ladder. BL/Infestor was the result of a bandaid patch that highlights my whole issue with SC2's balance teams as the Infestor was a useless unit so they gave it a mindless patch that changed FG only now the spell countered every unit which made the Infestor the most powerful unit in the game as FG couldn't be dodged and is AOE what was the balance team's response? Add the Tempest in HOTS to counter Broodlords which weren't the problem.
I've already posted 2 links with videos one even showing someone streaming with them they're very much still a big problem and have been all year for a third reference linked below this was earlier in the year, pretending the isn't a problem makes things worse, the proof is right in front of you and it can't be argued. Blizzard have always fought hacks but the was one thing that aided them in the fight and that was the risk of being banned from using hacks, these programs were always around the was just a big incentive to not use them and that incentive went out the window with f2p.