Roughly put, my understanding of the history of interior walls is:
- In olden days, plaster. Good/bad/indifferent - not everything was 3-coat. Good work took time. $$$
- Drywall. Faster, cheaper. Largely supplanted plaster, ex in Europe and Boston. $
- Then, skim coat. With joint compound. $$?
Apparently, skim coat looks better than straight drywall? If so, is that because the (taped & coated) joints are hard to hide?
Bonus question: if you're going to skim anyway, why not use veneer plaster, either over blueboard or over drywall plus a bonder? Am I wrong in thinking that plaster is much easier to trowel?
(Full disclosure: I'm going to do some drywall, for the first time. I have done some veneer plastering. I found the results more that adequate, and didn't think it was impossibly difficult - mostly, it set faster than I wanted. But, I'm far from a pro.)