First - thanks for your answers anyway. I also apologize if my posts look too emotional, I'll try to tone them down a bit.
Now on to ToC. =)
Point-Spend Cues are not intrinsic to solving the adventure mystery (they provide ideas about motivations or the reasons things are happening, but not where to go and investigate next).
You have not understood the reason for Investigative pool points. They are not a measure of how competent the investigator is - they are a limiting factor on how much "cool screen time" the investigator can show off in that particular skill during the adventure. If I have run out of my stock of Chemistry pool points then I must, by definition, have already had times during the adventure where I have either earned Point-Spend Clues in Chemistry or twisted the narrative in my favour in a Chemical way by proposing a Chemistry Benefit. If I have run out of Chemistry pool points then it's time for another investigator to show how good they are at Chemistry because I've obviously been showing off my Chemical skills enough by now.
I understand it pretty well, although to me it looks more like "Spending points is all about the KEEPER telling you how bright and clever your investigator is. Something like playing a console game: you press the button O or X and then enjoy the cut-scene of your character doing cool things, not doing cool things yourself. =(
P.P.S. Your analogy with CoC/BRP doesn't hold up either; I've got 75% Chemistry - so I'm a Ph.D level. I roll for my first clue in Chemistry and get 79% - I'm not so smart now am I ?
For my next clue I roll 82% - my fellow investigators are thinking I bought my Ph.D. from an on-line university.
For the third Chemistry clue I roll 91% - well I guess I may as well rip up my Ph.D. certificate.
Now the chances of that happening are only about 1 in 50 but it could happen.
Under GUMSHOE rules I would have got at the very least the first clue for certain ( and maybe all three if I had enough pool points or they were anything but Point-Spend Clues ).
funny, but not exactly what I meant.
I suggested something like:
if you have a skill (in BRP, for example) - you get the main clue automatically.
After it you may roll to get additional information. I only meant that ANY game system can use such mechanics, not only GUMSHOE, but when the question arises - GUMSHOE is always positioned as a nearly unique game system "not about getting clues but about interpreting them" and that's what usually annoys me. =)
I've come to love the Cthulhu Dark rpg, which with its uber-stripped-down rules, gives the players great agency without getting tangled up in the weeds.
I like it too, but it looks too universal and stripped down to me. )) "run or die" approach is not something many players can accept. =)
And, by the way, how do you deal with giving the clues to the players using CD?
See also minor, significant and major skill checks in Unknown Armies.
Mmmm... sorry, what exactly do you mean?