A. Yeah its kind of funny that way, back then I had 25FPS, low resolution, 300 ping times etc, and I kicked arse, even against people with sub-100 pings.
But when I was playing CS:S more recently(havent played in awhile though), with solid 50+FPS, sub-100 pings and high resolution(1920x1200), I sucked, its like my skill has gone down by a factor of my framerate....
B. Not sure what you mean by heat, but I dont really remember any unique features about HL2DM's maps, not that there isnt any, just I cant remember any(definently spent more time playing HL1DM), apart from the fact they are littered with physics objects of course, you can play an entire game without anyone using anything but the gravity gun
C. Im one who doesnt mind a good MMO, though none of the current MMOs can satisfy me anymore, so I dont play any of them right now, I will be honest though, I played EQ1 back in the day, and I dont think any MMO since has actually topped it for me, WoW is clearly the most popular, and is actually a fun game, but if I want a fun RPG I wont be playing a MMO...uh, I kind of worded that wrong(but I aint erasing it).
What I ment is MMOs are more then "just a game", if you remove the sandbox style freedom, you kind of lose the whole point, EQ1 for example, let any player kill any NPC, even inside the cities, even inside their races own city, it doesnt matter, you play how you want, of course, by killing something, you lose and gain factions, which in turn makes you hated/liked in different cities, a very basic system but no MMO has done it since.
I could talk about modern MMO faults all day, in short though: Freedom.
Oh and one last thing, I know EQ1 was a pain in the ass, losing levels, corpse runs etc, things that do need changing, but not at the cost of freedom, thats my point.
D. Well the main systems are in place, ill run through some examples.
System Shock 2 skillsets
Hacking: Uses a grid based system, you must connect 3 nodes in a straight line, but theres a chance(depending on your skills) for it to go dark instead, which means it blocks you from making a line there, you are able to hack turrets, security crates, shops, security doors and the security panels themselves, to turn off the security for a couple of minutes(which shuts down turrets and cameras), the hacking system in Bioshock isnt much less complex then SS2, however there is no security doors or hacking of the security system, also, it has the opt out of paying cash to autohack things, where as SS2 doesnt.
Research: In SS2 you get an unknown object that you can research, depending on your skill, enemy organs can give you bonuses against those enemies once you have researched them, however researching in SS2 usually requires chemicals throughout the process which are obtained from Chemical Storerooms that, if you did alot of researching, youd be going back to the nearest one to collect the chemicals, but since the levels in SS2 werent linear there was always one nearby.
In Bioshock they adopted a simple camera system for research, now this one I am not going to call a dumbed down version then SS2s, because its quite different and fits well, its not really dumbed down.
Dont think I will run through the rest of the skills, the main thing is SS2 has a bunch of skills you must manually spend points in, and Psionics were entirely optional, it was a true RPG.
Bioshock is still RPGish in nature, but theres no inventory, you are forced down one path(of using the powers), yet all the elements from SS2 are there in a simplified form(Psionics, Hacking, Security, Research and of course the weapons), to be more streamlined for consoles(I cant imagine managing that inventory with a controller).
However, I will admit that the PC version of Bioshock isnt really disappointing, it doesnt have bad controls or clunky arrow-key interfaces, so they did do a good job of the PC version, but I still miss SS2 :P
Oh, and coop:
E. Ive actually played SS2 on this system im on now, 8800GTX, Core 2 Duo E6600, 2GB RAM, running under Windows Vista 64bit, though now im on Win7 64bit, but havent tried SS2 on it yet.
These posts are getting long