What's the best way to keep a split up Tabletop party from metagaming? Sending them into different rooms? Writing secret notes? Telling them "your character doesn't see it, so neither do you"?
Originally Posted by Ohdi
I know I could "punish" a player for metagaming, but I'm curious as to whether there's a solid way preventing them from doing it altogether. Thanks in advance for any help.
It depends on the given in-game situation, and who your players are.
First, are your players mature enough to not metagame if you politely ask them not to? If so, clearly explain what metagaming is--some players metagame without realizing it, believing they are doing nothing wrong.
Second, how important is it to you that the players don't act on the given in-game knowledge? Even the "best" player cannot help but metagame to some extent--even if it simply a subconscious manifestation of wariness, distrust, eagerness, etc. So if you feel very strongly about the given situation, because it is important to the overarching plot or can directly affect the party's survival, then yes, more drastic measures need to be taken.
Secret notes work well for minor issues that can be resolved quickly, without requiring much back-and-forth. If you find yourself passing a dozen notes back and forth between your split group of players, and thus slowing down the game, you may be better off asking one group to leave the room and play xbox for the next half hour.
If it is a major split, then you may find yourself having to run different sessions for each group. Either group A comes over from 9-11pm and group B from 11pm-1am, or you alternate days/weeks. Ideally, this should be avoided, because it means more work for you and less gaming time for your players.
Hope this helps.