Prevent zoom-out into an object behind you

Too often I mistakenly back-up (zoom scrolling) into a group positioned behind the camera. For example, I’m in a room and backup (zoom out) and enter the wall. Depending on how complex the group is, often the only solution I’ve found is to zoom-extents and then navigate back in to whatever space I was in before the problem.

Is there such thing as an extension that, when turned on, keeps the camera from crossing through a face? I’d be fine if it only worked on the zoom-scroll as it seems it is helpful to rotate and pan through walls and whatnot. However, I cannot think of a single time that I would intentionally zoom out through various groups.


Eneroth Zoom Back moves the camera backwards until it hits something.

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There is a native tool Walk (I think) that has built-in collision.

Exactly what I was looking for. I don’t know why I couldn’t find it on my own, but it solved the issue perfectly. Thanks!

Thanks Dan! At first I thought it was a good solution to just move back using Eneroth’s tool, but in using that tool, I find it doesn’t accommodate just moving around. It is a single jump and that isn’t really what I want. I will have to take some time to “learn” the walk tool and see if it can completely replace my current navigation via the scroll wheel. I remain perplexed that they let you scroll out (zoom out) across a face. I cannot think of a single instance when I would want to do that? Am I missing something?

Do you design everything with open doors?

I scroll out of faces all the time to get me out of the interiors. I’m very much in favor om making so you could never zoom through a face when going forwards, Instead you would just get closer and closer and be able to see smaller and smaller details; no clipping issues! To get into a building you could use openings, section cuts etc (and this is what I already do because hitting your head against the wall is too slow).

Maybe the same could apply to getting out too, I don’t know. One reason not to check collision on zooming back is that you don’t see what you collide with and it may feel odd that the camera suddenly just stops and you don’t see why.

Hi Eneroth3,

Thanks for the comment. I agree about scrolling in (zooming in) to get finer details, but I think that is a math limitation not a forgotten feature. So, what do you do when you back up (zoom out) and ACCIDENTALLY pass through a face (i.e. you still want to be in the room you were just in)?


Hi Box,

I usually leave doors hidden while building interiors. Why would that make a difference?


I use the Previous view button.


without traveling through other objects, backing out of a maze would be tricky even for an escape artist


Ha! Got me with that one. But really, why would you back out of a maze? I turn around and go forward out of the maze, no? If you back out, you’ll end up immediately inside a wall or inside a corredor where you don’t know how to proceed. I maintain my statement so far (although I’m paying attention to these arguments and may be missing something) that there is no reason to back through faces.

■■■■, now I feel stupid. That IS my solution and I never even paid attention to it. Basic 101 move I’ve neglected for years! That is getting a hot-key right now.

So, for a vote, which should be the answer to my query? Dan’s “Walk Around” which works but needs learning and seems quirky while trying it for the first few times. I don’t know if I can make it replace my normal scroll-wheel navigation. How many of you use this tool for navigation on a regular basis. Or Eneroth’s “Previous” in which you just have one click to recover from the “mistake” of backing into something. Right now, I’m feeling like “Previous” is what I will use, but don’t want to be too capricious in changing the public “solution” 3 times without good reason.

Thanks everyone for your comments. I’m feeling like I’ve been less that curious in exploring the various basic tools I should be familiar with. I’ve just been introduced to two tools that have been in front of me for years. Yikes!