Binding of Isaac
Before being reborn, Isaac had more than his fair share of suffering in the hands of his mother and the dark imagination of the creators of the game. The Binding of Isaac is an action-adventure shooter inspired en parts by the Bible and it is definitely not a game for the sensitive souls among you. It features plenty of gore and blood, some outright disgusting creeps and many, many piles of shit.
Then again, to paraphrase, thanks to the global network we have seen this and much worse, so there’s that going on about us. I must admit that despite all horrible things one encounters a very distinct characteristic of the game is its artistic mastery. Messy and repelling, the rooms are drawn in distinctive style. Edmund McMillen has spread large doses of humor across the levels and has managed to give the entire experience a very unique feeling. Only after a run or two it would be hard to forget (especially when closing your eyes) the unmistakable atmosphere of Isaac’s world.
Scary and full of monsters, the dungeons in which Isaac crawls lead him closer and closer to the ultimate boss – his mother, who is scarier than any creep in this underworld. Infused by the power of god, she is truly a force to be reckoned with and even Isaac’s tears might not be enough to move her. But that’s mostly because she is fat.
So, here’s the gameplay in a nutshell. After escaping his mother, Isaac finds himself in a dark dungeon with may rooms and levels. Mostly every room contains nasty inhabitants, who would have no mercy on the poor crying, naked child. He is naked because his mother took his clothes away, as instructed by divine voice. This also brought tears to his eyes and tears became the main weapon Isaac has – with them he can destroy the opponents while running away from their projectiles and other attacks.
Every level of the basement has a few bosses and secret rooms, rooms behind locks, and often a place to play slot machines. Pretty crazy, huh? Welcome to The Binding of Isaac.
Compared to The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth the variety of weapons and bosses is not that great but it is more than decent. This makes the game more consistent and not so dependent on RNG, because in the remake one get get extremely lucky early on and steamroll everything that moves but also could end up with a hopelessly inadequate gear, which would make the entire run a massive pain in the butt.
The original game is a bit smaller, with fewer upgrades and bosses, but it also has several characters to unlock and many secrets to discover. As I was told by an absolute fanatic of the remake, who plays it for a couple of hours daily for a few months now: Rebirth is better but if there were no Rebirth the original Binding of Isaac would have been the best game ever!
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