The fun derived from playing The Binding of Isaac can differ depending on which character you decide to play as. Some seeds suit certain characters, and some characters make all runs more challenging. Choosing a favorite character is difficult and entirely subjective, but we thought we’d give it a go anyway. Here are The Binding of Isaac characters ranked, starting from the worst to the best.
15. The Keeper
Let’s get this one out of the way fast. There aren’t many positive things to say about the Keeper – he is an extremely difficult character to play as that leaves you at risk of death in every single room. It’s also very difficult to be able to take devil deal items with the Keeper due to the way his HP is linked to coins.
The only saving grace for the character is the fact that he starts with The Inner Eye, leading to the potential for some fun early synergies. For me, though, the Keeper has to find himself at the bottom of our ‘The Binding of Isaac characters ranked’ list.
14. The Forgotten / The Soul
The Forgotten – and his ghostly chained companion – are an acquired taste in the Isaac community. Some love playing as the Forgotten, while others try to avoid at all costs. I am in the latter camp.
There is no denying that the Forgotten is a unique player that is able to produce some interesting synergies, but the fact that you must rely heavily on melee attacks and carefully monitoring the HP of two characters at the same time make him difficult to play as and, at times, quite frustrating. Perhaps a better player than me would be able to make the Forgotten work in a more efficient way.
Maggie is a great character to learn how to play the game. She starts with a good amount of HP and you can tank your way through the early floors of the game without having to worry too much about dying as you get acquainted with the enemies and rooms in the game.
Her poor movement speed and below average starting active item (Yum Heart) means that you’ll quickly want to progress onto a different character as you get better at the game, though.
12. Blue Baby (???)
Blue Baby is not particularly great, but not particularly poor either. The main pull for the character is that he is unable to take red heart damage, meaning that devil deals are guaranteed early on even if you are hit by enemies. Other than that, there’s isn’t much to say about Blue Baby, he’s a very average character.
Lilith has the potential to be great, but only in certain situations. Namely, it could be argued that Lilith is the most powerful character in Greed Mode due to the ability to repeatedly use the Box of Friends active item that she starts with.
On a normal run, though, Lilith can be frustrating, and you have to quickly adapt to firing tears from Incubus – if you don’t, the run will be over quickly. Cambion Conception does give Lilith the chance to spawn Dark Bum early on in the game, which is always nice, but not enough to move her higher on our list of the Binding of Isaac characters ranked.
Cain is a strong character who starts with good luck and speed stats that can give you an extra boost on the early floors. He also carries the Master of Lockpicking trinket which can allow you to freely open Gold Chests from the start of a run. Despite being a strong character, though, Cain lacks that special something that would push him higher up the list.
Apollyon can be a very fun character to play with and, with the use of the Void, you can quickly nullify the annoyance of finding bad items early on in the game by turning them into stats. You can also build the ultimate active item by using the Void to absorb the abilities of your favorite items in the game.
A lot of people find Apollyon to be a disappointment but, for me, he is definitely one of the best Binding of Isaac characters to play as.
Related: How to unlock Apollyon
Eve is another powerful character who has the ability to become strong early on. She can activate the Whore of Babylon effect sooner than any other character and carries the passive Dead Bird item from the start.
Once you’ve unlocked the Razor Blade as a starting item for Eve (donate 439 coins to the Greed Donation Machine), you can transform a poor run into a powerful one in the matter of seconds and storm your way through the early floors in no time.
When I first started playing the game, Azazel was (in my eyes) the best Binding of Isaac character by far, and the one that I turned to for a quick and easy run. I’ve since fallen slightly out of love with the fallen angel, though.
The fact that Azazel starts with Brimstone and the ability to fly is a major plus, but the more you play the game you realize that the limited range that Azazel has can quickly become a problem and, oftentimes, lead to the abrupt end of a run. But Azazel was the character that made me fall in love with the game and, for that, I can’t rank him lower. I still fondly remember one of my first ever runs, in which I was presented with the Ludovico Technique and Tiny Planet on the first floor – if only all runs were that easy…
6. The Lost
The Lost is one of the more challenging characters to play as, but also one of the most fun and rewarding. With no HP and starting with the Holy Mantle, you are only two shots away from death in every room you walk into (unless you have the Blanket), but this just adds to the intensity and problem solving required to complete the run.
The main attraction of The Lost is the ability to freely take devil deal items without worrying about the HP sacrifice. If you’re lucky enough to get a four-item devil deal with Satan early on, the run could get out of hand fast. The Lost has quickly become a favorite for me and is easily one of the best characters in The Binding of Isaac series.
Lazarus is certainly one of the best Binding of Isaac characters and, if you are able to quickly switch over to resurrected Lazarus on the first floor, the potential for an OP run is greatly increased.
Lazarus’ starting stats are fairly average but, once resurrected, your damage, tears, range, speed, and luck all improve. Lazarus also has the added benefit of starting with Anemic passive item, which improves range and leaves a trail of damaging red creep in his path.
Once you unlock the D6 as a starting item for Isaac, he becomes one of the strongest characters in the game. The ability to change poor items throughout the entire run can lead to Isaac taking you on an OP run in which you can reroll for your favorite items at will. Indeed, Isaac is the character that all players begin as, and he also evokes a feeling of nostalgia when returning to play as him.
Samson is one of the strongest playable characters in the game and has the ability to harness incredible power early on due to the passive use of Lusty Blood. Samson already starts with good starting stats, but the ability to gain damage after taking damage make Samson especially powerful and can lead to some great synergies, such as with the Dull Razor or the IV Bag.
Always fun to play as, Samson fully warrants a place near the top of our Binding of Isaac characters ranked list.
When I first started playing the game, I avoided Judas at all costs because of the low HP that leaves you vulnerable to a one-shot death from the start. After developing as a player, I quickly realised that Judas is, in fact, one of the best Binding of Isaac characters and has the potential to obliterate that early floors with ease – especially once you unleash The Book of Belial.
Once you throw Black Judas into the mix (spawned when a character dies while holding Judas’ Shadow), things can get out of hand fast. Black Judas is a powerful character that has the best starting stats of any other character. There is no doubt that Judas should be near the top of our ‘Binding of Isaac characters ranked’ list.
Perhaps a controversial decision but, for me, Eden is the best character in The Binding of Isaac. The unpredictability of each run adds to the fun and excitement of each play and adds to the incredible replay value of the game. It’s true, you could start with Isaac’s Heart and Butter Bean, but you could also start with Tech X and Spoon Bender.
The good runs are fun, and the bad ones present an interesting challenge to be overcome. Plus, without Eden runs I wouldn’t have become addicted to Northernlion and Sinvicta playthroughs, among others. Without hesitation, I’m placing Eden as number 1 in our The Binding of Isaac characters ranked list.
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