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7:00 PM on 11.19.2014

We played Binding of Isaac: Rebirth because we haven't had a good cry in a while

Max and I started playing The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth because it's a good-ass game, and we like to do gaming. Max has actually never played any iteration of Binding of Isaac before, so I let him go first, knowing that I'd only have to wait a few minutes before my turn.

Bill Zoeker


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Review: The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth photo
Review: The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth
by Nic Rowen

In 2011, I lost a chunk of my life. An insidious tendril of addiction, despair, and obsession caught me by the ankle and dragged me into the The Binding of Isaac's darkened basement. I lost dozens of hours, whole days at a time. I let life slip by around me while muttering a demented mantra of “just one more try, just one more try...”

Now with the release of Binding of Isaac: Rebirth, a 16-bit looking half-remake, half-sequel of the original, I can feel the same cold touch on my leg. Its grip is stronger than ever, pulling me back into the same dark pit. I should kick and scream and try to escape... Well, maybe just one more try won't kill me.

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12:45 PM on 10.07.2014

The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth teased for Wii U

Fans of The Binding of Isaac have long wanted the game on 3DS and while that'd be great to see one day, I'd be just as happy to to have it on Wii U. Which might actually happen! I know! Nicalis uploaded this video yesterday and that blip at the beginning sure is a Wii U overlay. There's also this Twitter exchange between designer Edmund McMillen and Nicalis' Tyrone Rodriguez. [Via GoNintendo]

Jordan Devore



Nicalis kicked my ass again with Castle in the Darkness photo
Nicalis kicked my ass again with Castle in the Darkness
by Jordan Devore

After checking out The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth at PAX Prime, I spent a decent chunk of time with another upcoming Nicalis project, Castle in the Darkness. It's a challenging platform-adventure PC game that feels all too appropriate given the company's prior involvement with 1001 Spikes.

Admittedly, words like "challenging" and "difficult" get thrown around often -- too often -- when describing games that aren't afraid to test players. But good lord, Castle in the Darkness was tough. I must have died 50 times during my playthrough, and that's being conservative.

Part of that has to do with your limited health -- a few hits is enough to do you in, at least early on -- and your knight's movement, which takes getting used to. He's quick, super quick, and his initial sword attack doesn't extend very far. It was frustrating at first to come to terms with all of this, but I suspect the fast pace will feel great with sufficient practice and muscle memory.

The game's structure is exploration-based in that you'll hit switches and acquire items that will allow you to reach previously inaccessible areas. There's also going to be a ton of bosses, based on what I played. That damn owl from the trailer gave me hell. Expect gear upgrades, too.

Castle in the Darkness is rather clearly inspired by NES classics in the genre, particularly Castlevania, which I don't consider to be a negative. Maybe you do. Either way, I'd suggest getting your hands on it before casting any final judgments. Could be pretty cool at the right price.

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5:30 PM on 09.08.2014

The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth is everything I hoped it'd be

One of my favorite parts of PAX Prime this year was an appointment with Nicalis. Not only was the meeting away from the crowded, noisy Washington State Convention Center, it was an opportunity to get sucked into The Binding o...

Jordan Devore

2:30 PM on 08.19.2014

Co-op in The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth is looking good

Here's Edmund and Danielle McMillen previewing cooperative play in The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth including one of the game's twenty challenges, Head Trauma, in which you have tons of tears spraying all over the place but the...

Jordan Devore

1:15 PM on 08.06.2014

Nicalis announces Castle in the Darkness for PC

Castle in the Darkness is leaping to Windows PC this summer, Nicalis announced today. The retro-style platformer draws inspiration from "the golden era of videogames," vaunting an expansive open-world and a "damning" difficulty curve. The story follows a kingdom's last remaining royal guard on a mission to save the land from a sorcerer and his evil army.

Kyle MacGregor

8:00 PM on 07.29.2014

Replay runs, customize controls in The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth

I convinced myself long ago that The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth was something I needed in my life, so every additional detail or feature we're told about in the lead up to release is just icing on top. This week, customizable ...

Jordan Devore



Another fair comparison: 1001 Spikes is better than Game of Thrones photo
Another fair comparison: 1001 Spikes is better than Game of Thrones
by Jonathan Holmes

Believe it or not, there once was a time when many, many people thought that Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare was better than Advance Wars. Thankfully, those days are over now. According to my numbers, 89.6% of those who once suffered from the false belief that Kevin Spacey's upcoming AAA blockbuster competitive murder-spree is better than Nintendo's classic cartoon general simulator have been successfully converted to the truth. Though it's hard to be sure just how responsible I am for this turn of events, it's fair to guess that I'm largely responsible, because why not? You're welcome everybody. 

But a cowboy's work is never done. There are still many poor souls out there suffering from the delusion that a thing that they like is better than a thing that I like. Case in point -- Game of Thrones. Apparently, many of of you out there believe this show/book series is as good as, or even better than, the new death-trap stuntman 2D platformer Aban Hawkins and the 1001 Spikes.

Sorry Throners, but you're about to get pwned(ers). 

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10:00 AM on 06.28.2014

Skyward Sword and 1001 Spikes speed runs will get your blood pumping

Skyward Sword and 1001 Spikes may not look like they have a lot in common, but they share a lot of the same design sensibilities. Both games are about exploring relatively small, densely packed areas that appear simple on th...

Jonathan Holmes

11:30 AM on 06.07.2014

1001 Spikes leaps to Xbox One next week

1001 Spikes is landing on Xbox One next week, publisher Nicalis recently announced. The insanely difficult platformer is already available on PlayStation 4, Vita, Steam, Nintendo 3DS, and Wii U, but Xbox One owners will ...

Kyle MacGregor





2:30 PM on 06.03.2014

1001 Spikes knows how to do a launch trailer right

Ooh, this is looking good. In the lead up to 1001 Spikes, there's been plenty of footage shared but much of it appeared to be from the earlier levels. Now, with this launch trailer, we've got a proper preview of the misery t...

Jordan Devore

7:30 PM on 05.30.2014

1001 Spikes also hitting Wii U, 3DS on June 3

We heard the PS4, PS Vita, and Steam versions of 1001 Spikes were coming June 3. Which is great and all, but I know a number of us were going to hold out for the game on Wii U or 3DS -- no need to! Nicalis has confirmed those...

Jordan Devore

1:30 PM on 05.28.2014

1001 Spikes comes to PS4, Vita, Steam on June 3

Nicalis' 1001 Spikes is a game I'm excited about but have somehow completely missed the chance to talk about. It's a particularly brutal action-platformer that also doubles as an outstanding Mario Bros. style party game. Ther...

Dale North

12:30 PM on 05.20.2014

Turn-based fighting game Toribash now available on Steam

Do you know Toribash? It has existed as a free-to-play game for a while now on Mac and PC, and it even came to WiiWare several years ago. The turn-based, muscle micromanagement fighter starring Vectorman's cousins may now ga...

Darren Nakamura

4:00 AM on 05.20.2014

1001 Spikes' multiplayer gets everyone in on the dying

If you can be certain of one thing for the upcoming Aban Hawkins & the 1,001 Spikes, it's that dying is an inevitability -- an inevitability that will happen time and time again. This trailer shows some of the ways that ...

Brett Makedonski