Sturmir wrote:In the example he gave, he states approaching a mineral vein, and using knowledge dungeoneering to identify the mineral, using engineering to identify the tools used, using geography to identify what the region is known for in minerals.If he's asking something basic, just assume he takes 10 on the knowledge and tell him what type of mineral it is. If he's asking something irrelevant, like the tools used or the type of plant the creature is eating, just say, "Who cares? Stop wasting everyone's time."
Regardless of the situation or player I think declaring any question you don't immediately understand the point of as a waste of time is just going to cause more drama.
A far better way to handle that is giving the person a little bit of rope and if things don't seem to come together in some sort of coherent idea after a moment you can move on to another player saying "OK that is going to take you some time to research" (or whatever fits) at the appropriate next question and then just turn to the next player and say "What are you doing during all of this?" and continue doing so until all of the other players have had a shot in the spotlight before returning to him. Let the player come to the conclusion they are wasting their own time in the spotlight rather than declaring, quite aggressively I might add, that they are wasting everyone's time. After all this is an RP, they can do what they want with their characters and follow any line of reason. Its far better to nudge them by giving them the chance to draw the conclusion for themselves that their effort is taking too long and bearing no fruit than it is to seek out a confrontation.
Of course if they are deliberately trying to be a nuisance to the game and they create the confrontation you won't have a choice. But then its time to boot them from the group and seeka another player.