I remembered that before I had even laid a Dust-textured brush of Dust PCG, I played around with HL2’s mapdev materials and sketched out a rough plan.
Normally, these textures would be reserved for maps where artwork is not yet complete, just as placeholders for the final piece.
I was planning out some brushes in-editor, just to get rough scale right. However using the Dust textures, I was getting too caught up in making the rough structure look good. I was planning out how the map would play, using brushes covered with Dust textures, but my attention was constantly turning to tidying up the brushes and making the place look real, rather than concentrating on the layout.
The solution was to forget the Dust textures, and just use the mapdev materials. I tried it, and a rough layout was easy to transpose, without me starting texture passes or anything silly (I did get a little distracted and started making bizarre structures, but I needed some sort of outlet).
Consider these comparison shots:
To be fair, the orange map was fairly different, but these areas still show a little correlation. The proportions/length and placement of some roads and buildings are exactly the same.
I think you’ll agree the similarities are more exciting than a visit by the little old lady next door.