Baby Mode: Binding of Isaac Rebirth’s Co-op Detailed

Throwing bones.

Local co-op coming in The Binding of Isaac‘s remake may sound jolly exciting but are you concerned that having help might turn the roguelike-like into a game for, not just about, babies? Relax! Take a chill pill, pal. Designer Edmund McMillen has explained how it’ll all work and, from the sound of things, Rebirth’s co-op will bring the joys of friendship without necessarily losing the thrills of trying not to die. See, calling in a baby friend (no, co-op players actually are babies) will cost a slice of your life, and they may come with a terrible curse.

Co-op players steal a heart away from player one when they join, and while the baby gets the same abilities as Isaac currently has (or whoever you’re playing as), both deal reduced damage. Babies are drawn from a sizeable pool, which mostly look different but may be “special” or “cursed,” he explained in yesterday’s blog post. “So there is just as much of a chance in spawning a baby that will randomly spawn a troll bomb every 1-2 min. as getting a baby that heals p1 when it dies.”

Player one is also in charge of items, activating them for both at the same time, so there’s a risk of bombing each other and whatnot too. Should you bomb your baby or they otherwise die horribly, they’ll respawn as a new, different baby.

It does sound like co-op will still be a bit easier overall, mind. But that’s fine, possibly even great. McMillen calls it “an awesome way to get new players into the game.” Here, have an animated gif:


  1. NailBombed says:

    Been waiting for aaaaages now for this to be finished – hope it’s soonish. And that gif looks like co-op will be mad fun. Love me some TBOI.

  2. Rincewind says:

    The thought of having to fight three Chub bosses at the same time fills me with terror.

  3. Utsunomiya says:

    Fuck this, give me my Mewgenics right now.

    • ColCol says:

      Hahah, funny that you should say that, Recently, in his Blog ,Edmund made it sound like that game might not even be finished in 2015. Hell, to me the the tone used to in regards to the project makes me think it might end up being cancelled. Yet, Edmund is still saying it will see the light of day.

      • tobecooper says:

        Do you mean the ‘In a year or 2’ comment?
        It’s worth keeping in mind that Edmund is a weirdo with a weirdo sense of humor :)

        • ColCol says:

          Normally,I would agree, but I also believe there was another similar comment, where he said he can’t see it being done next year (maybe I’m getting it mixed up with the one you mentioned).

    • Zanchito says:

      Yeah, eagerly awaiting Mewgenics since I first read about it here. Hope it turns out better than the usual game of creatures/genetics (except for The Sims).

      • Tacroy says:

        My impression is that he’s having a hard time making it fun to play.

  4. C0llic says:

    I want rebirth right now!

    The Binding of Isaac is already brilliant and I still play it. If all this remake does is tweak a few things and make it a better game mechanically, I’d be incredibly happy at that prospect.

    Given what we do know, that it adds a little more than that, and that there will be a generous discount for BoI owners, and I couldn’t be happier at the prospect.

    • smeaa mario says:

      This here ^
      Still I can’t wait for Rebirth to be finished. I invested countless hours in the original and this one will surely double the time stolen from my life.

  5. Peter Radiator Full Pig says:

    I have been waiting a mighty long time for this. I think this will be the first pre order I will do since I made the titanic mistake of ordering Empire: Total War.

    Only thing I dread is having to play co op with my friend who really sucks at this game. Hundreds of hours and he cant even come close to finishing it :P
    If you are reading this, Ger, Im talking about someone else, i swear………..

    • JazzpillFlightmanual says:

      Finished 100s of times, just nowhere near platinum god peter!!!

      Can’t wait for this game, waiting for a release date every week when ed McMillan does his updates…

      • NailBombed says:

        303 hrs…. still no Mama’s Boy or Dark Boy no-hit runs. Ggggnnnnrrrrrrr.

        • Fenix says:

          I got Platinum God and everything else by playing it 217 hours… but I have to admit I abused one bug that was around after Ed made an update to get the Dark Boy things (if you walked into a spike with half a heart you would become invincible) sorry :(

    • EOT says:

      I’ve played 49 hours and only beaten Mom’s Heart once (the one and only time I’ve gotten to it). I am the text-book definition of ‘shit at Isaac’.

  6. Turkey says:

    Has anyone checked out A Wizard’s Lizard? I just saw it on Steam and it looks pretty similar to Binding of Isaac, but I don’t know if it’s any good or not.

    • WombatDeath says:

      Northernlion, also known as the guy who has 840 BoI videos on his channel, has started a let’s play of Lizard which might give you the info you’re looking for.

    • EOT says:

      I’ve seen Northern lion’s videos of it. The art looks awful.

    • Peter Radiator Full Pig says:

      When I played it, it was fairly terrible. Its mechanics were just… boring. Its hard to pin down why, but i wasnt impressed in the least.

  7. MazokuRanma says:

    Is this local co-op only then? I can’t see wide adoption as local for PC. Local on consoles makes a lot of sense, but I never play local co-op games on my PC.

  8. Syra says:

    Fuck local only.

    Where is online?

  9. redgore says:

    I can’t wait. Might reach 1,000 hours on the original by the time it comes out. lol. (at 892 hours played ATM)

  10. kalirion says:

    Wait, BOI will have large rooms that won’t fit on the screen without scrolling? Not sure how I feel about that.

    One the one hand, bigger is better. On the other, I do not look forward to many, many deaths to projectiles (especially lazers!) fired from off-screen…

    • Jackablade says:

      Ah yeah. Vis and Eyes are going to be a pain in the arse. Maybe they’ll set it up so that they won’t attack you unless you can see them.

  11. MaXimillion says:

    That’s not a gif.