New ports of Isaac are slated for the Xbox One, the Wii U, and the New Nintendo 3DS. The release is a significant milestone for McMillen, as his game was previously blocked from appearing on Nintendo’s platforms due to its controversial religious content.
Based loosely on the Biblical story of Abraham and Isaac, The Binding of Isaac addresses weighty themes throughout, including child abuse and religious fanaticism. Gameplay sees starring character Isaac moving from room to room in dark basement environments, battling disfigured creatures using a twin-stick control setup to run around and weep projectile tears.
In 2012, a planned Nintendo 3DS port of Isaac was scrapped when Nintendo denied an eShop release due to the game’s “blasphemous” content. After partnering with publisher Nicalis, McMillen launched a revamped version, The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth for the PlayStation 4 and PS Vita platforms in 2014, marking the game’s first appearance on consoles.
The upcoming Wii U and 3DS versions of The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth will include new features unique to Nintendo’s platforms. Players on the Wii U have the option of off-screen play using Wii U’s GamePad, while the bottom screen of the New Nintendo 3DS is reserved for an in-game map.
The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth will premiere as the second licensed 3DS game to require the upgraded New Nintendo 3DS hardware; original Nintendo 3DS and 3DS XL devices are not supported, due to the game’s processor-intensive demands regarding presentation quality. Currently, Nintendo’s Xenoblade Chronicles 3D is the only other 3DS game that requires the New Nintendo 3DS to function, though other games like The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask 3D offer optional support for the hardware’s added features.
The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth will be priced at $15 when it launches digitally for the Xbox One, New Nintendo 3DS, and Wii U on July 23.