I‚Äôve played a lot of The Binding of Isaac whether it be the original flash based game, Rebirth or my latest addiction the newest DLC named Afterbirth. Since Afterbirth completely changes major mechanics of the game I‚Äôll hold off on the review of the game itself until it’s eventually released to console systems, this review will be more about the port of the game on the 3DS, actually New 3DS since it‚Äôs exclusive.


Remember how Nintendo promised exclusive software only playable on the New 3DS? Well like those tonnes of DSi Exclusive games Nintendo has yet to deliver even a single announcement since Xenoblade Chronicles 3D, however as usual, indie devs come in to save the day. The Binding of Isaac Rebirth will only run on the New 3DS, and their reasoning is that they tried to get it to run on both but it wasn’t coming together due to technical difficulties, which if that was the case I’d hate to see that version.

Rebirth on the 3DS doesn’t run very well, even with the added power of the New 3DS. Yes it runs at 60fps like all other versions, but that will very often dip down every other room. I have a lot of playtime on the PlayStation Vita version of the game (yes, people do actually own them) and while it was never up to scratch in terms of fluidity with the PC version, it was fine in it’s own rights and i put hundreds and hundreds of hours into the game. I‚Äôve played about 5 hours of the 3DS version and I just wanted to stop right there.

Some of the more intense tear effects completely lagged up the game to a frame rate closer to 6 than 60. While this isn’t uncommon in Isaac across most platforms, it’s definitely a lot worse on the 3DS, even with the added performance


My biggest complaint is more about the system itself than the game, every console Rebirth has launched on has two control sticks which can be for movement and shooting, the 3DS while having the C-Stick which will work, is very uncomfortable and more importantly imprecise. You are then left to shoot your tears with the ABXY buttons, which while functionally works fine, it’s nowhere near the comfortability of a control stick. I guess to make up for this the 3DS version has some minor exclusive features. The map and UI mostly appears on the touch screen and like the Legend of Zelda games on the DS you can draw all over the map which is pretty helpful for floors where your map is disabled. Don’t get your hopes up for 3D in this game however, as it’s not present at all.


Rebirth launched in the US back in July and with it came a slew of technical issues, freezing and crashes. Released in October for Europe thankfully we seem to have avoided most of these issues with the subsequent patches installed on initial download. In my playtime I experienced only in-game lag, the game itself was functional. Worth noting if you got this far, the games actually not released in Australia, due to high costs for low sales in the region, they didn’t even attempt to release it here, even though the PSN versions came here fine.

Review concludes below.


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Well, it's hard to recommend a game to an audience where 90% of you won’t be able to purchase the game. Hopefully Nicalis will try to release it here with the new IARC classification process, but given their previously release history, we are lucky any PAL Region got the game in the first place.

Rebirth is also available on the Wii U however unlike PS4/Vita there’s no cross-save functionality so the games will be completely separate save file wise. With more cons than pros, it's nice the game finally made it to a Nintendo System, but us Aussies aren’t really missing out on much.

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Daniel P
  • Burak H
    November 13, 2015 at 7:16 am

    The DSi had plenty of exclusives via the DSiWare Shop, and a few DSi exclusive retail titles (rarer than unicorns) that had funny looking art that made them look more like bootleg games than officially licensed ones.

  • Alex
    November 13, 2015 at 8:45 am

    One would hope that the new rating systems in place would allow Binding of Isaac to be released here, but I guess it came in too late and Nicalis likely won’t submit it for that. A shame, but hopefully we don’t miss out on things like this in the future.

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