Oh, it's YOU, with_teeth. Yes, I took the bait and want to try my hand at contributing to the community a little.
I'm intrigued by your responses: afraid I haven't played either, but I've heard quite a bit of talk about Cryostasis and after your suggestion, I'll give it a look.
ASFM made me think about this question quite a bit (I know he liked System Shock Two's story), especially with his very important and accurate remark that Half Life actually does NOT have a good story, but rather good storytelling. It's a subtle difference, one that most gamers won't get, unfortunately.
Thanks for the suggestions!