Again you fail to understand my point regarding Skirmish and Melee.. must be my fault entirely.
But I will try again, and make it as simple as I can. It doesn't need to explicitly state that you can use both Simple Melee and/or Full Melee, what it needs (in my opinion) is to not just state something that directs you to one of the options, and that is saying that Melee is organized in Plays, which, to my knowledge only applies to Full Melee, which may lead people to conclude that in Skirmish only Full Melee would be allowed, which we both agree was NOT the goal of the rule.
Rules shouldn't introduce a mechanic, describe it in a given way, and then, in a later chapter expand into various options that apparently go against what was said in the first place. Exceptions are Advanced or Optional rules, where appropriately identified.
If you think that the paragraph Melee under Skirmish is not ambiguous and cannot lead to confusion. Great. The fact that you seem to have a far greater understanding of the system and its evolution over various iterations though may create an obstacle to analyze how someone who's new to the system may view such introductions or explanations. And that was my goal, to make things easier for people reading the book for the 1st time, not people who know it inside out. But hey, I accept that it may just be me...
As for the Clock and the fact that you state that there are Extended rolls in the game.... well, let's start.
- Clocks are tools to track progress towards something that is prolonged, Right. (I actually stated in the previous post that Clocks could be used for just that). Did I kept that out? I was addressing the mechanics NOT the way to track progress, which indeed the book already provided...
- Alas, the scope to which the Clocks apply RAW (you do seem to like this type to language) are multiple Conflicts not a single conflict drawn out over several rolls, a distinction already applied RAW in the Cascading rolls mechanic. In the first case failing each conflict may result in different and multiple complications or simply fail to achieve the tasks intent, whereas no such thing occurs either in Cascading Rolls or in the Extended Roll as I introduced in this discussion.
- Also this various conflicts that work towards filling a given clock can be very disparaging in the actions undertaken and the timing in which they can be undertaken. They don't need to form a coherent, clearly defined and prolonged episode, rather they are different episodes, hence different conflicts, played over time towards the resolution of a goal.
That is my working theory, hence the reason to come up with the mechanic as I presented it.
Is it the best, or better yet, the only solution? No, I don't have the nerve to boldly claim that.
As for the Clock being an alternative, again you misunderstood what I wrote (but must be my poor domain of the English language, for which I apologize, but hey I'm not a native speaker). Its an alternative to partial MoS, as I introduced it in the mechanic, which could also be applied in such a way as to fill just a single segment per roll, independently of the partial MoS. In either way they are an alternative to the way Clocks are used RAW, read for tracking different Conflicts, "If the clock is tracking progress based on ability checks, a successful conflict fills one segment. On an MoS3+, two segments. On an MoS5+, 3 segments.", which is almost halfway to those two options I gave above.
As for the duration of Simple Melee that was what I inferred from the rules. In Skirmish time is structured in Rounds. In each Round players can do one dramatic thing, referred to as an Action. This structure plays well with the structure of Full Melee with its plays and tempos. "If after three full plays neither opponent has gained any real ground over the other, the action ends in a deadlock. The bout pauses and the camera moves on to the next character’s action as normal. The characters are considered to be locked in the bout and will both roll a red d6 next round as above." Meaning it can last over several rounds, taking several actions, but that seems to apply RAW only to full melee, which plays out over several rolls, over several sub-time structure units. Whereas Simple Melee is done with a single roll, using the "basic" rules for conflict, and "costs" 1 action (at least I haven't seen anywhere where the opposite is stated, and as such I'm just applying the default), which means one round, unless a tie is the outcome and the parties decide to escalate.
Why do I say it takes a round. Well because it takes an action to do so, and the results are derived from a single roll, hence the conclusion that its solved in a round. Which makes it easier to objectively count time in the case of having simple melee in a skirmish where other intervening parties opt to use other options available in a skirmish, be it red, white or 2d6.
The GM CAN adjudicate differently, and judge that a Simple Melee takes place over 3 rounds, for instance, but should say that from the start so that other members not directly involved in the simple melee may act in the default round sequence.
As for the Toolbox argument I think its self explainable. But hey, you may be right and I just didn't looked hard enough...