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Troubleshooting FAQ

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YellowWarning.png The solutions here are user-generated, and The Black Mesa Team
takes no responsibility for their implementation. Use them at your own risk. You are encouraged to back-up your system/game files before attempting any changes.


Contents


« Black Mesa »

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General FAQ         Single-player FAQ         Deathmatch FAQ         Co-operative FAQ


Installation & Starting

I've downloaded the game and all I've got is a ~3GB file with 7z extension. What should I do?

Your download is incomplete. The complete game installation package consists of three files: one being a .7z archive with the game itself, another being an md5 checksum which allows game installer to verify the integrity of the installation package and the executable allowing you to install the game. It is possible to manually unpack 7z archive but it is “kind of advanced” topic which would not be covered in this FAQ. Also you must have Steam and Source SDK Base 2007 installed to play this game (both are free). Check here to know what is Steam and how to install it, and here to install the Source SDK Base 2007.

I installed BM using the installer but I can't find any icon in Windows Start Menu or desktop shortcut. How do I start the game?

To play BM you have to start the Steam client application and select the “Library” tab. Look into "All games" or "Installed" options; there you'll find “Black Mesa” waiting for you to start playing.

The mod didn't show up on my Steam's games library after the installation/Steam restart.

If you can't locate BM in the Steam's game library, it is because your Steam was running at the moment you installed the mod. Restart Steam and it will appear on your library (as a last resort, restart your PC).

Black Mesa will only show up in your Steam games list if you install it to:

<Steam installation folder>\Steam\steamapps\sourcemods\BMS 

Which is the default directory the installer suggests. If you had installed it on a different folder, you won't be able to start the mod until you move the game files to the above directory. But if you don't want to move the files, see this little guide to make the mod work even in different folders. If this also didn't work for you, try this another solution. Make sure you have Source SDK Base 2007 installed before you restart Steam.

When I try to launch the game it doesn't start. If I try to run another game like HL2 it works fine...

You didn't install the Source SDK Base 2007 yet. BM will not run without this tool. Check here to see how to install it.


Hardware: Requirements & Tweaks

I've got a slower GPU/CPU than listed in the System Requirements. Would I still be able to play BM?

Yes, but you could have problems with FPS drops at some places throughout the game. There are some workarounds though that could allow you to play the game moderately well in case you had been able to play HL2:EP2 or Portal II with a good enough frame rate on your rig. These workarounds would be listed later in this FAQ.

I have "any Intel/Integrated graphics" and want to play BM, will it work?

Intel graphics aren't much suitable for playing BM. Maybe at a low resolution you could play a little, but it depends.

Latest HD 3000/4000 variants actually allows to play many D3D9-age games and console ports with ~30-60 FPS having quality settings set to medium or low. But in general people trying to play games using Intel GPUs should be warned that they are on their own and should expect FPS dropdowns, input lags and lots of other problems related to bugs in Intel drivers which were known to be even more buggier than ATI/AMD ones.

You can play really low-key games, but the point here is that you really cannot expect much with BM if you have one of these Intel/Integrated chips.

Mac OSX: Is it supported? / How to play BM on Mac?

Mac isn't officially supported, but does exist a way to play BM in that platform. Check this forum thread to know how to do this.

It takes quite a long time to get past loading screens, what can I do to speed this up?

Let Steam degfrag your game files so the loading screens are shorter. BM tends to have pretty long loading screens even on very good computers. Or manually defrag the files yourself and place them somewhere on the outer pallet of your drive if you are using a mechanical HDD.

Can I use a tweaked configuration file for BM to make it perform way better than than the default settings?

Well, yes and no. There are some things that could be tweaked but don't expect to get “huge performance increase” as a result. Here is a configuration used to play the game on GTX 550 Ti with 1GB VRAM coupled with AMD FX 8120 CPU and 16Gb DDR3 system RAM:

cl_showfps 2
fps_max 62

mem_max_heapsize 3000 mat_alphacoverage 1 mat_compressedtextures 1
mat_specular 1 mat_bumpmap 1 mat_parallaxmap 1 mat_queue_mode 0
r_threaded_particles 1 r_threaded_renderables 1
snd_async_fullyasync "1" snd_mix_async 1 dsp_slow_cpu 1
cl_predict 1 cl_smooth 1 cl_forcepreload 1 sv_forcepreload 1
fog_enable_water_fog 1
r_dynamic 1 r_dynamiclighting 1 r_maxdlights 16
m_filter 0 hud_quickinfo 1 r_flashlightdepthtexture 0
rope_smooth 1
texture_budget_panel_x 550 texture_budget_panel_y 112 texture_budget_panel_height 450 texture_budget_panel_width 512 budget_panel_x 0 budget_panel_y 50 budget_panel_height 900 budget_panel_width 512
alias BudgetShow "sv_cheats 1; +showbudget; showbudget_texture 1; alias BudgetToggle BudgetHide;" alias BudgetHide "-showbudget; sv_cheats 0; showbudget_texture 0; alias BudgetToggle BudgetShow;" alias BudgetToggle "BudgetShow;" bind b BudgetToggle bind n "incrementvar texture_budget_panel_global 0 1 1"
alias DynamicOn "r_dynamic 1; r_dynamiclighting 1; alias DynamicToggle DynamicOff;" alias DynamicOff "r_dynamic 0; r_dynamiclighting 0; alias DynamicToggle DynamicOn;" alias DynamicToggle "DynamicOff" bind "u" "DynamicToggle;"
bind "j" "incrementvar r_WaterDrawReflection 0 1 1;" bind "m" "incrementvar r_drawparticles 0 1 1;"
alias +walk "sv_maxspeed 120;" alias -walk "sv_maxspeed 320;"

You should adjust at least mem_max_heapsize to match the amount of the memory available on your system: in case you have less than 8Gb you should really lower this value to something like 1500 or 2048. If you have 2Gb – set it to 1024 or even to 768. You might have to experiment a bit with it. Or simply comment out this line and let the engine use default value.

Also you might with to include “-preload” in BM startup command line parameters – it isn't required and is expected to force the same engine precacheing behavior as “cl_forcepreload/sv_forcepreload” do but it won't hurt having it there either.

Lower-end videocards (like GTX 450/550/550 Ti) can't afford enabling MSAA due to severe performance drop. Is it possible to use postprocessing based anti-aliasing techniques with BM?

Yes, you could use SMAA/MLAA/FXAA injectors with BM. Place injector d3d9.dll into:

<Steam installation folder>\steamapps\<your steam username>\source sdk base 2007\bin

All other files like “injector.ini” or “SMAA.fx”/“SMAA.h” should go to:

<Steam installation folder>\steamapps\<your steam username>\source sdk base 2007

It seems that some keys can't be used to control injectors. For injectSMAA I use the following injector.ini config:

[injector]
;toggle shader keycode
key_toggle = 44

;make screenshot keycode key_screenshot = 122
;reload shader files keycode key_reload = 19
[smaa] ;smaa preset one of {SMAA_PRESET_LOW, SMAA_PRESET_MEDIUM, SMAA_PRESET_HIGH, SMAA_PRESET_ULTRA} preset = SMAA_PRESET_ULTRA
[misc] ;set to 1 to improve steam overlay compatibility weird_steam_hack = 1

It allows to turn SMAA on/off by pressing Pause/Break button and to take BMP screenshots through injector using Print Screen. Screenshots are not that important though as Source 2007 SDK engine is perfectly capable of capturing screenshots on its own.

Note: make sure you don't use D3Doverrider to force vsync/triple-buffering for hl2.exe. It won't work with SMAA injector. What you'd get would either no triple-buffering forced by D3Doverrider or no SMAA injected by SMAA injector.

Note 2: Set “Antialiasing” to “None” in the game advanced video preferences dialog and do not force MSAA though GPU driver control panel. If you would try to use SMAA having “Antialiasing” set to anything but “None” in game you would end up with SMAA producing no visual results but eating up your GPU fillrate. If you try to force AA in game using GPU driver control panel while have antialiasing disabled in game you would end up with broken in-game reflection and refraction effects.

I want to switch the engine to another DirectX version. What should I do?

In order to switch the engine into using another dxlevel you should quit the game and then edit BM startup command line by specifying “-dxlevel XX” there. XX should be one of: 80, 81, 90, 95 or 98. You really shouldn't use 80 or 81 unless you have really good reasons to do it and you really know what are you doing. You're on your own with dxlevel 80/81, bug reports for this renderpath are not welcome and seems to be considered invalid. On Windows XP you should use either mode 90 or 95. There shouldn't be much difference between those modes but you might have slightly better performance with dxlevel 90 in case your GPU is pretty old one (like GTX 8800/9800 or GTS 250). DirectX level 98 is intended to be used with DirectX 10 compatible videocards under Windows Vista and up accessed through compatibility D3D9 layer. There shouldn't really be any difference between dxlevel 95 and 98 on Vista+ so you're free to chose and use any of these. But in case you're on Vista/7 or Windows 8 and experience some troubles with dxlevel95, try switching to dxlevel98. It might help, but chances are low.

After you start up the game with the dxlevel specified on the command line be sure to check that the game had actually switched into using specified dxlevel by checking the contents of the “Hardware DirectX level” box in the advanced video settings dialog. In case you've got the engine switched to the level you want – make sure to quit the game and remove “-dxlevel XX” from the BM command line. Forgetting to do so would result in game resetting most of the video settings to the default values each time you restert the game – which is not convenient at all.

Why can't I find an option for DirectX 10?

The game was built on an Engine created in 2007, which doesn't support DX10 graphics. Unfortunately there is no way to change it.


Performance Issues

The game micro-stutters like mad as soon as I try to move. I have vsync turned on.

This problem had been reported to be caused by trying to use multithreaded materials rendering which is in theory supported by the Source 2007 engine but de-facto is pretty broken. Open up in-game console and execute (i.e. type in and press enter):

mat_queue_mode 0

Also you could try disabling vsync and check if that helps.

Lot of “freezes” in-game: sound stutters and game does not reacts on keyboard/mouse input. After a second or two the game unfreezes continues on normally.

There are several known causes for this problem. First of all, make sure to update the soundcard drivers to the latest available version. Then, configure your default sound output device to use “Stereo speakers” or “Headphones” mode and make sure you have the same setting chosen in the game audio settings dialog. If this doesn't help – time to start experimenting. Try adding “-nosound” to the BM command line parameters and check if the game freezes the same way without sound. If not, try specifying “-primarysound” in the command line parameters instead of “-nosound” and check if that helps. If not – try “-wavonly”.

If the game freezes the same way with the sound turned off – try moving your Steam installation to another storage (preferably to a fast SSD) and try defragmenting your hard drive (in case you use HDD and not SSD).

If nothing helps – try playing with downgrading GPU drivers to an earlier stable release or try using bleeding edge beta GPU drivers. Also make sure you don't have any of the system components overheating (CPU, GPU, motherboard chipset hub). If you overclocked your CPU and/or GPU, revert them back to a fabric-default settings and check if it helps. If you're on Windows Vista or 7 – try disabling Aero desktop theme.

I'm playing the game and it works fine in general but sometimes the FPS drop really low, specially when I see smoke/dust/mist or other particle effects.

Post processing and particle effects are pretty heavy tasks on CPUs -- physics, dynamic lighting, particle systems simulation, geometry processing -- or GPUs -- fillrate, dynamic lighting, triangle setup -- and probably you don't have the CPU/GPU power to process these effects (you need at least a dual core CPU for tasks like that).

Most frequently encountered task-heavy situations are fillrate-constrained effects like smoke clouds in the Test Chamber right after the resonance cascade, and dynamic light calculations that are being done when marines/sentry guns shoot at you or when you set zombies on fire. Less common troubles are water reflection coupled with a lot of highly detailed geometry rendering or physics-related CPU tasks (the tentacles in Blast Pit are known to cause it). Bring down the console to see if you are you gettting any 'object drawing errors' in the location that you're in.

Also try to turn your particles settings down. If this doesn't work, the "easiest" way to remedy this problem would be a “get better CPU/GPU”. But if it is a thing that you are unwilling to do now, you can add the following command at the end of autoexec.cfg of your BM installation:

texture_budget_panel_x 550
texture_budget_panel_y 112
texture_budget_panel_height 450
texture_budget_panel_width 512
budget_panel_x 0
budget_panel_y 50
budget_panel_height 900
budget_panel_width 512

alias BudgetShow "sv_cheats 1; +showbudget; showbudget_texture 1; alias BudgetToggle BudgetHide;" alias BudgetHide "-showbudget; sv_cheats 0; showbudget_texture 0; alias BudgetToggle BudgetShow;" alias BudgetToggle "BudgetShow;" bind b BudgetToggle bind n "incrementvar texture_budget_panel_global 0 1 1"
alias DynamicOn "r_dynamic 1; r_dynamiclighting 1; alias DynamicToggle DynamicOff;" alias DynamicOff "r_dynamic 0; r_dynamiclighting 0; alias DynamicToggle DynamicOn;" alias DynamicToggle "DynamicOff" bind "u" "DynamicToggle;"
bind "j" "incrementvar r_WaterDrawReflection 0 1 1;" bind "m" "incrementvar r_drawparticles 0 1 1;"

With these commands in place as soon as you hit FPS dropdown you (a) should press “B” and take a screenshot, then press “N” and take yet another screenshot and then check what bar had the most length on the graph you're presented with. Most of the times you would have the longest bar displayed against “Dynamic_Light_rendering” - and to remedy this you should press “U” on your keyboard. As soon as you do it you this bar should shrink to a minimum. If the longest bar is next to “Swap_Buffers” label and there are a lot of smoke/sparkles effects displayed on screen – press “M” and check if that helps. If the longest bars are next to “Static_Prop_Rendering”, “Other_Model_Rendering” and there's a bar of a noticeable length next to “CViewRender::Render” - try pressing “J” and see if that helps.

To hide the budget panel (red thingy with a bar graphs) press “B” once again and continue playing. As soon as you think you had passed by the FPS problematic area – press “U”, “J” or “M” once again to turn related effects back on. Be sure to only press “U”, “J” or “M” second time in case you had pressed it before to “fix” FPS drop. This keys act like switches: when you press them for a first time they disable related effect and when you press them for the second time they enable the effect back and so on. “U” controls dynamic lighting, “J” - water reflections, “M” - particle effects.

When you finish your play session, make sure to collect all the screenshots you had captured for problematic FPS areas and post them in the Bug Reporting Sub-forum with the detailed info of your hardware and software configuration. It would allow developers to pinpoint the most problematic places in-game from the performance PoV and hopefully fix it somehow in future updates.

I have a multicore CPU and I'm experiencing low FPS and/or lots of stutters in BM despite my system being way higher than the requirements.

Try changing the CPU affinity for the hl2.exe process in the Windows task manager. Some people report that setting affinity to use 3 out of 4 cores on quad core CPU had “fixed” stutters problems for them. Some other report that limiting hl2.exe to only use one CPU core works better for their case. Latter one has some ground with last generation of Core i5/i7, AMD Phenom II x6 and AMD FX CPUs – ensuring that OS won't endlessly move the execution of the main game thread from one CPU core to another might allow Turbo Boost/Turbo Core technology to do it magic effectively reducing in-game CPU pressure. You could find more detailed info on how to set CPU affinity here.

I have a laptop with "Nvidia Optimus" or a dual GPU setup ATI configuration, and the game plays like crap.

Most likely your computer is set to use the "Intel" or whatever low-powered GPU you have installed. Instead of your high powered one. Go into your Nvidia (or other applicable) settings and change the default graphics processor to your Nvidia/ATI chip then restart your computer and try playing the game again. Also make sure that BOTH your Intel and Nvidia chips have the latest drivers.

I have tons of screen tearing whilst playing, it looks like a loading .jpg or something. Is there a fix?

You have two options.

1) Turn on V-Sync your FPS is too high for your monitors refresh rate and your screen is tearing. If you experience lag after turning on V-Sync then turn off Triple Buffering. If you experience input lag after turning on Triple Buffering then you need a better computer. It's normal for many PCs that aren't totally incredible to have their frame rate drop under 60 (or whatever your refresh rate is) in scenes with intense effects or whatever. eg. Firefights and Outdoor areas. V-Sync will drop your frames a little (hopefully not too much) and still prevent screen tearing in areas where your FPS gets too high. While some people report that the amount of input lag is tiny, others with a high DPI mouse who are used to playing FPS games with a high level of sensitivity may find that the amount of lag will irritate them. It's really up to you how you want to balance screen tearing in smaller areas where your framerate may go over your monitors refresh rate, vs. the chance at a couple of ms. of lag. All in all, the problems can be fixed by getting better hardware, and/or hopefully after a few patches comes out. With decent hardware the game is completely "finishable" without tearing or lag however.

2) To get minimum amounts of input lag and vsync at the same time:

a) Limit FPS to slightly above 60 FPS. Easiest way for Source engine is to include fps_max 58 in autoexec.cfg.

b) Use D3Doverriter to force-enable vsync and triple buffering.

c) Be sure not to force vsync off in the videocard driver control panel. Also be sure that - in case driver control panel allows to set this setting - "Maximum pre-rendered frames" is set to at least 2 in order for "triple-buffering" described here to work.

d) Play in fullscreen mode - current nVIDIA drivers seem not to vsync properly vsync in case you have multiple monitors and run your app in window.

e) Make sure you do not change any in-game gfx settings without quiting the game right after that and restarting it back - D3Doverrider seems not to be able to force triple-buffered render queue mode upon D3D context re-initialization the game does on the gfx settings change.

The game plays almost perfectly, but it's still a little stuttery.

Have you tried overclocking your hardware? If you have good cooling, and know what you are doing you could try overclocking. It can make a big difference, or no difference at all. Don't worry too much if your game experience is almost perfect, in overclocking your RAM. Just go for the GPU and if that doesn't provide enough of a performance gain, then overclock your CPU. The limits in which you should overclock your hardware depends on what hardware you have and what cooling you have and is not something that anyone here can give you advice on. Google "<your hardware>, and <overclocking> it". Just make sure you understand the risks first. Overclocking means unpredictable instability (and reporting bugs against overclocked systems is a waste of time). It's up to the user, because it is really a "hit or miss" kind of situation. You can end up with better performance, and games that weren't playable suddenly are, or you can end up making things worse.

Now, if your hardware IS overclocked, try the opposite. Put your hardware back to stock-clock settings and see if it plays better.


Crashes

Troubles with starting up the game: it either immediately crashes at start with a “hl2.exe stopped working...” message (Windows 7/8 or Vista) or with a “The program has performed an illegal operation and will be shut down.” (Windows XP) or displays some error message like “Failed to create D3D Device”.

First of all, check that you're using latest version of the GPU drivers for your videocard. Next, you could try adding “-window” to the BM command line parameters in steam (right click on the “Black Mesa” entry in Steam games library, select “Properties” and then press the “Set launch options...” and paste “-window” to the edit box. It it hadn't helped – try using “-fullscreen -width <your monitor native resolution width> -height < your monitor native resolution height>” there. Still no luck? Try puting “-dxlevel 90 -window” there. If nothing helps – check if other Source-based games like original Half-Life 2, HL2: EP1, HL2: EP2, HL: Source, CS: Source, Portal, Portal II, Team Fortress II do not suffer from the same problem. If they are – report a bug to a Valve's support. If not – read the instructions on how to report your problem to developers.

I get some strange visual glitches or sudden game crashes at "X" location in "Y" level. How to fix this?

It depends. You can try to change your graphics details to the lowest possible playable settings, just to get past the problematic area you have encountered, then set them back to what they were before to see if you still get problems.

But BM seems to be extremely picky to a way you change render-related settings. If you want to change texture detail level or to disable HDR rendering – make sure to save the game first, then execute the “disconnect” command in the in-game console, then do the desired changes and then quit and restart the game. If you simply change the setting in the middle of the play session and continue to play on – expect the game to crash in the near future.

There are no definite answer on how to fix it really – so simply get used to quit and restart the game as soon as you change some sound or video related setting.

You could also hit some sporadic crashes not related to settings change. There shouldn't be a lot of such kind though so simply restart the game and continue playing. Make sure to upload crash minidumps after you finish playing, so devs can investigate the problem and hopefully fix it in future patches.

Turning on the flashlight crashes the game and/or causes other undesirable effects.

It seems to be a driver-related bug. There are reports from several players that reducing shadows details to "Medium" or "Low" and disabling HDR usage (setting it to "None") could help with this problem.

Most of times flashlight-related game crashes affect people using AMD Radeon HD 6xxx/7xxx with drivers versions from 12.4-12.8 range. It was reported that downgrading to earlier versions of the driver might help. Also there was a report that resetting CCC settings to defaults and then turning off Catalyst A.I. and texture filtering optimizations helped at least one user to fix this problem.

Also there are reports of nVIDIA drivers having a bug in later releases making flashlight and/or shadows to be rendered incorrectly on GeForce 7XXX GT(X) video card series. It is not yet known what version of driver to use to workaround this problems, last two "stable" releases (from 306.XX and 301.XX branches) are bugged for these cards, but there is a report that using driver 168.16 with 7xxx series nVIDIA cards fixes the problem.

As a last resort measure you could try temporarily switch the game into using dxlevel 80/81 as described in this FAQ.

Note: make sure to restart the game after changing any of the video quality settings.

The game crashes sometimes/often when going through any loading screens.

This can happen when the player is doing something through the loading screens. For instance, shooting/reloading/throwing grenades/jumping etc. Just reload your last save, walk normally through the loading point and wait.

When I turn the fan on in Silo D, the game crashes either as the fan spins up or when it gets to max speed.

Others have stated that it's probably a physics glitch and some have reported that smashing all of the boxes and/or throwing all of them and the barrels down past the fan into the abyss has prevented the game from crashing. You could always try getting out of that area as quickly as possible, and making for the next loading screen.


Bugs & Glitches

I found a bug/glitch/exploit which isn't serious enough to prevent me from completing the game or enjoying it. How can I proceed?

Go to the "In-Game Issues" sub-forum and read the instructions about how to report an issue. Don't forget to provide enough pictures or videos of the issue (if possible) and your system specifications.

When I start a new game, my mouse acts like a joystick. If I press any key on the keyboard, my mouse crosshair spins uncontrollably.

Do you have a mouse/keyboard sharing between several different computers program named Synergy installed on your PC? If so - it's most probably is the cause of the problem [1]. Report a bug to "Synergy" developers and disable/deactivate it prior to starting the game.

Some preferences I set in "Black Mesa" tab of "Options" dialog are not saved between game restarts and always reset to defaults.

It is a known bug in BM, and there is no real fix for this (yet). As for now, you can use workarounds as described in this thread.

Flashlight doesn't work as it should and/or shadows being rendered incorrectly.

Read here.

Strange visual glitches in-game, like pink-checkerboard textures on some objects (NPC eyes, Freeman's hands) or a white line crossing the screen diagonally from one corner to another.

For a some reason you have the game running in a DirectX 8.0 or 8.1 mode. It is a legacy renderpath that is supported by the Source 2007 SDK engine but is not properly supported by BM. You have either to switch the game into using DirectX 9.0+ mode or to get used to play with visual artefacts as they are. You could workaround diagonal white line crossing the screen by disabling HUD post processing in the “Black Mesa” tab of the game settings menu. Be sure to also disable chromatic aberration post processing filter while you're there if you intend to continue playing in DX8 mode (or you would get the entire screen temporarily go black when something hits you).

To check what renderpath does the game engine use go to the “Settings”->”Video”->”Advanced...” from the main game menu and check the contents of the “Hardware DirectX level” text box. It should state DirectX v.9.0 or 9.5 or 9.8 for the game to work as was intended by developers.

To change your DirectX version, read here.


Gameplay & Balancing Tweaks

Where can I find autoexec.cfg and config.cfg that are used by BM?

They are located at:

<Steam installation folder>\steamapps\sourcemods\BMS\cfg

WTF!!!... I can't jump high enough in this game!?!? Is my Black Mesa bugged???

Nope. You simply aren't using the crouch-jump (SPACE + CTRL). The crouch-jump is an important gameplay aspect to solve the jumping puzzles, and without it you cannot progress too far in the mod.

How can I increase the jump height?

Navigate into BM configuration files folder and edit skill.cfg file. Find a line stating “bms_normal_jump_vertical_speed” and set the value you want there. Repeat the same for “ bms_normal_crouch_vertical_speed”. Many people all over the internet seems to use these values as their preferred defaults:

bms_normal_jump_vertical_speed "200"
bms_normal_jump_crouch_vertical_speed "200"

Tweak these values in order to match your personal preferences. But it is adviced to not change these as you would have to use the defaults when the deathmatch version of BM is released.

Slow walking toggle seems not to work at all. Is there any way to fix it?

Include the following hack in your BM's autoexec.cfg:

alias +walk "sv_maxspeed 120;"
alias -walk "sv_maxspeed 320;"

Be warned that it won't help you to safely crouch/walk near the tentacle in the Blast Pit level – game engine seems not to match the original tentacle behaviour of the HL. So you still would have to use grenades or other explosives to distract the creature in order to pass that area of the map.

Game difficulty seems to be a bit too hard on normal, is it?

It is a matter of a personal preference. Try switching to the easy skill level if you feel that the game is too punishing for you and makes you into a “save/reload whore” behaviour. Alternatively you could tweak some things in skill.cfg a bit, like damage coefficients for headshot or arm/legs. In the original game headshot was dealing triple damage compared to the normal corpse shot and arms/legs shots had been dealing the same level of damage as corpse shots. In BM by default head shots deal twice the damage of the corpse shot and arm/leg shot deals 80% damage of the corpse shot. You could change it to make in line with the original like this, making the game a little easier to play:

sk_npc_head "3"
sk_npc_chest "1"
sk_npc_stomach "1"
sk_npc_arm "1"
sk_npc_leg "1"


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