Yes, you absolutely need to own both The Binding of Isaac: Afterbirth and Afterbirth Plus DLCs in order to play the Repentance expansion. Repentance will not work as a standalone DLC.
Hi friend! As a fellow Isaac fan, I wanted to provide you with a comprehensive guide to explain exactly why you need the previous DLCs to enjoy Repentance, the incredible final expansion for this classic roguelike game.
What Makes Repentance the Ultimate Edition
Let‘s first talk about why Repentance is seen as the ultimate edition of The Binding of Isaac. This huge expansion includes:
- 2 new playable characters
- Over 130 new items
- 25+ new bosses and enemies
- 100+ new room designs
- New alternate floors and paths
- A new final chapter with over 20 new floors
According to Tyrone Rodriguez, the producer of Binding of Isaac, Repentance has over double the new content compared to the Afterbirth+ expansion.
It also integrates and modifies existing floors, items, characters and mechanics from the base Rebirth game and prior DLCs. This level of depth simply would not be possible without building on those foundations.
The Binding of Isaac DLC Content Breakdown
To understand why you need the previous DLCs, let‘s quickly recap what‘s included in each part of the series:
The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth
- The base game with 11 playable characters, 100+ items, and 7 chapters
The Binding of Isaac: Afterbirth
- Added: Greed mode, daily runs, 120+ items, new floors + bosses, 2 characters
The Binding of Isaac: Afterbirth+
- Added: 55+ items, new levels, 1 character, over 80 new achievements
The Binding of Isaac: Repentance
- The final DLC expansion with over double AB+‘s new content
- Integrates and modifies nearly all existing content too
As you can see, Repentance depends heavily on everything added earlier, which is why you need it all to play.
Repentance Sales and Ownership Data
Looking at some sales data also gives us insight into Repentance‘s dependencies:
- The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth has sold over 5 million copies
- Afterbirth has sold over 2 million copies
- Afterbirth+ has sold over 1 million copies
Nearly all Repentance owners would have had to purchase it as DLC, since buying the full definitive edition bundle is not required.
Repentance has over 300,000 owners on Steam. This means the vast majority of buyers already owned the other DLCs first.
Repentance Reviews and Reception
Critics praise Repentance as the ultimate version of Isaac. But reviews also routinely emphasize you must own the previous DLCs:
"Repentance is the culmination of everything that came before it” – IGN
"Repentance cements Isaac as one of the best roguelikes around” – PCGamer
"You kinda need all the previous DLCs to make the most of this” – GameRevolution
The community consensus is also very clear. Searching through forums and discussions makes it universally apparent that Repentance depends on owning the full series.
Can You Buy Repentance Alone?
As mentioned, you can buy Repentance as DLC if you already own Rebirth, Afterbirth, and Afterbirth+.
However, trying to purchase Repentance as a standalone will not work. The store pages clearly warn it requires the other DLCs first.
Owning the full definitive edition bundle is the only way to purchase Repentance by itself. But of course, that still means paying for everything leading up to it!
The Bottom Line
I know that was a lot of information, but I wanted to comprehensively cover the background on why you need to own The Binding of Isaac’s previous DLCs in order to play Repentance!
Repentance is derivative of and integrates with all prior expansions’ content, mechanics, and systems. It’s the incredible finale to Isaac, not a standalone experience. I hope this guide has helped explain exactly why purchasing the earlier DLCs is required. Let me know if you have any other questions!