Obsolete functions - WalkAbout

With this thread, I would like to start my series of discussions about functions in Rhino which unfortunately seems for me as obsolete and maybe they are worth rethinking and update.

First one to take a closer look on is WalkAbout. How it’s done right now is far from how it should look like in 2019. No matter the “step size” it stutters, it doesn’t recognize multiple keys pressed (only one direction at a time, no chance to move diagonally in 2D nor 3D), everything shakes, and the camera goes crazy every once in a while.
Since the beginning of my adventure with Rhino, I couldn’t understand why I can’t really go through my designed spaces and buildings to just look around. Maybe because Rhino wasn’t meant to be used as much as it is in the architecture field. Where because of scale, it’s more likely to rotate a spectator than an object.

After a couple of years, I even invested in 3D mouse from 3dconnexion. I like this device but what I would like even more, is to not rely on it because sometimes it’s buggy.

I think that having an option to move freely around sometimes very vast, sometimes very small and narrow spaces just to check concept is a must. Right now I do it after export to Archicad or Unreal Engine 4 which is absolutely too long routine for this purpose. Both programs let the user navigate in a very intuitive and fluid way, best known from video games using both arrow keys or WSAD.

I like how it performs especially in UE4 where you can access speed slider very easy.

click and hold RMB to activate movement
a-move left
d-move right
q-elevator down
e-elevator up

Because right-click in Rhino repeats the last command, it must be activated different way than in UE4, maybe with some hotkey toggle? Archicad did it this way (Hurry - “sprint” option seems very handy, but UE4 have better placement of elevator keys IMO):

If you have different examples of how this function is implemented in other 3D software and how it could be in Rhino, please bring it here and share your thoughts about that.


Agree Walkabout is not very handy.
I have been working on WASD-movement based plugin for Rhino. I am hoping it will be released soon:



i agree and would like to add my voice to this

Great that you want to do it by yourself! Don’t hesitate to show progress or share your ideas with other users.

Let’s say that you did it nicely, then what should happen to WalkAbout if there will be a much better plugin with the same function? It’s doesn’t look like a healthy environment when after a clean program install you got a bunch of useless functions which you got to replace manually by external plugins.

I’ve added your post to this open item - Walkabout is lame.
Perhaps when @nathanletwory gets done with Cycles?

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I think Walkabout still has some use, especially for more precise camera setup once you have your “rough” view set. But the name suggests what users would expect in 2019 to be real-time model walkthrough, I agree, and then it may look disappointing.

Implementing WASD movement sounds simple but it actually quickly grows into a bigger task if you want to do it properly and make it really useful, with things like gravity, collisions and more Rhino-specific functions that are handy while walking/flying. It has been long on the wishlist for Rhino. I think what I have works quite well, but it will not be a free plugin. I am not sure what McNeel approach would be with that, I would assume duplicating the functionality that would be available via plugin may not be a high priority, but who knows…


For that precise manipulations, there should be a switch between normal mode & extremely low sensitive for both mouse and keyboard movement, which would allow users to tweak their render frames without worrying of accidentally moving the camera 1 meter to the side.
I know that full body muscle tension when I got to move the camera just a tiny, tiny bit. Luckily, now I have dpi switch button in my mouse so I can do part of that job even without this option in the software.

As collisions and kind of gravity affecting spectator are taken into considerations - I think that sometimes they are cool, but most of the time they may interfere with our movement and not really needed. I wouldn’t like a solution where the only way to leave a room is through the door :smile: - definitely need an on/off switch for that too. So real simulation of walking + free-flying mode would be very cool!

In my practice when I want to use collisions and gravity I use a 3-rd person mode in UE4. In my opinion, it brings huge benefits for better understanding the scale of the objects, as we constantly compare everything to the human scale which we are naturally the best familiar with.

Now It came to my mind - how awesome it would be to turn on First Person View, casually walk by and interact with things through Kangaroo. Especially if that would be medium size things like a regulated position lamp or something. It could give you that feeling of the object’s scale.
Unfortunately, I didn’t have a chance to play like that with my school project of a lamp (didn’t even know about this kangaroo function). But I hope that you can see from the still render that I would like to manipulate it If I could!

For those who don’t know about this Kangaroo function, there is a video:

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