Let’s say the PCs in your game come across a murder scene. You’ve got a dead body in a room that’s obviously died as the result of foul play and your player wants to look the body over. Do you let them describe going through the motions if the player wishes to get their CSI: Camelot on and answer what they find as they do the things, or do you insist on a Discern Realities roll and adhere closely to the questions available?
I had a situation like this during a recent session where I described the general lay of the land with the victim laid out on the floor. We determined that a Discern Realities roll was in order, they rolled a 7-9 and got 1 and asked what happened here recently. The player goes back and relays the murder scene to the party and when they return, another PC decides to start looking over the corpse and rolls well and finds some clues that furthered the story, which happened to be a key and a journal. The other player seemed slightly annoyed as they definitely felt they would’ve gone through the pockets of the corpse had I allowed them to, but we agreed on Discern Realities being triggered and so they never got the opportunity to do so.
Anyone else have experience with this? I think the DR call was correct, but being that they ended up going with “What happened here recently” there’s really no way to answer that in a way that has anything to do with the contents of the victim’s pockets. If your PC comes up against something like this, and it triggers a DR roll, and they end up rolling poorly, do you ask them what they want to do after the weak DR roll and let them do the things they’d be doing to investigate the crime scene further, or do explain to them that they’ve learned everything they can even though they know they haven’t done some specific thing that they would’ve liked to?