Binding of Isaac: Rebirth Wiki
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Kotaku Daily Challenge Mode.png

The daily challenge (or daily run) is a unique run generated every day. Daily Challenges were introduced in The Binding of Isaac: Afterbirth. Daily challenges start the player off with a specific character, seed, end-stage, difficulty and set of starting items. The player is scored and placed on a global leaderboard after ending the run. The run can only be played once per day, but an unscored practice run is unlocked afterward, which is identical to the Daily Run but can be played multiple times. Unlike regular runs, the Daily Run cannot be continued; exiting the Daily Run will end it and disallow further progress.

All unlockables are available during daily challenges (the game acts as if full game completion was attained for this save file). Daily runs cannot be played if mods or the debug console are active. However, mods can be used on practice runs, after finishing a daily run for that day. Finally, achievements are disabled during daily challenges.

Curated daily runs[]

Currently, the game has 52 curated daily runs a year. Each curated daily run offers a different challenge, some quirks, and some restrictions. The list of the disclosed daily runs can be seen here.

Score[]

Score plays a bigger role in daily challenges, as the player is ranked in the leaderboards by their score. Having a strategy that accounts for how the score is handled is important in achieving an optimal score.

Below is a list of all the starting points for each character.

Character Starting score
Isaac (with The D6 The D6) Starts with 627
Magdalene Starts with 644
Cain Starts with 594
Judas Starts with 568
??? Starts with 560
Eve Starts with 566
Samson Starts with 610
Azazel Starts with 600
Lazarus Starts with 630
Eden Depends on starting items.
The Lost Starts with 526
Lilith Starts with 594
Keeper Starts with 610
Apollyon Starts with 577
The Forgotten Starts with 590
Bethany Starts with 609
Jacob & Esau Starts with 630

The final score is calculated based on several bonuses and a few penalties:

  • Stage bonus, the number of points earned for reaching a set of floors;
  • Exploration bonus, points awarded for exploring and clearing rooms or events;
  • Schwag bonus, points earned for collecting pickups;
  • Rush bonus, awarded for clearing Boss Rush or Hush;
  • ??? or Lamb bonus, awarded for killing ??? or The Lamb;
  • Mega Satan bonus, awarded for killing Mega Satan;
  • Damage penalty, points lost for taking damage;
  • Time penalty, points lost for spending time;
  • Item penalty, points lost for picking up items (actives and passives).

Stage Bonus[]

Stage bonus is pretty straightforward: a fixed value given to each floor you reach. To reach a floor, you need to clear the previous one. Stage bonus is immune to floor restarts (ie: when using Forget Me Now or a 5-pips Dice Room, and cannot be pushed higher than 20,000.

Floor reached Bonus points
Basement 1 500
Basement 2 1,000
Caves 1 1,500
Caves 2 1,500
Depths 1 2,500
Depths 2 2,500
Womb 1 3,000
Womb 2 3,000
Cathedral / Sheol 3,000
Chest / Dark Room 4,000*

* The Chest and The Dark Room will not yield any "floor bonuses" by themselves, but you do get 4,000 points for killing Satan or Isaac, or otherwise reaching the 11th floor

Therefore, by reaching these floors, the total Stage bonus gained is as follows:

Floor cleared Total bonus
Basement 1 1,000
Basement 2 2,000
Caves 1 3,500
Caves 2 5,000
Depths 1 7,500
Depths 2 10,000
Womb 1 13,000
Womb 2 16,000
Cathedral / Sheol (reached) 16,000
Cathedral / Sheol (boss killed) 20,000
Chest / Dark Room 20,000

Exploration Bonus[]

Exploration bonus is awarded for visiting rooms, clearing rooms and killing enemies. The damage penalty calculation results in a damage penalty proportional to the players exploration bonus, this means that the player will receive a larger damage penalty the higher their exploration bonus is. The maximum damage penalty is limited to 80% of the exploration bonus.

Room Bonuses[]

Each room will have its visited and cleared bonus value assigned according to its type and size, with 2x1 and 2x2 rooms accounting for twice the bonuses for visiting and clearing.

Rooms will default to 10 points for visiting and 40 for clearing if not stated otherwise. Added in Repentance Red rooms are worth the same amount as the type of room that they generate as. The table below accounts for the size of Boss Rush, Hush and Black Market rooms, the reader should take care not to double these values again.

Room type Visited Cleared
Normal room 10 40
Arcade
Sacrifice Room
Added in RepentanceUltra Secret Room
Added in RepentancePlanetarium
Challenge Room 200
Boss Challenge Room 300
Mini-Boss Room 70
Boss Room 100
Boss Rush 20 1000
Hush Room 20 1000
Shop¹ 30
Treasure Room 30
Library 30
Curse Room 50
Devil Room 50
Angel Room 50
I AM ERROR room 60
Secret Room 60
Bedroom 60
Vault 60
Dice Room 60
Super Secret Room 160
Black Market 160

1 Removed in Repentance If Greed is inside, the shop is considered a mini-boss room and worth 70 points for clearing instead of 40

Enemy Bonuses[]

Killing enemies will add to your exploration bonus - roughly 10 points for each killed enemy. The following formula applies to most enemies that spawn on room entry:

According to the formula, a single enemy in a room is worth 5 points; 2 enemies are worth 6 points each; 5 enemies 7 points each and so on. Only enemies that spawn on room entry are worth points and count towards the number of enemies in the room, this makes enemies in Challenge Rooms, Boss Rush and those spawned by other enemies worth no points.

Angels spawned by Sacrifice Room spikes or by blowing up angel statues will grant 300 points each.

Schwag bonus[]

Schwag bonus depends on the raw amount of pickups you collected throughout the run; it has an upper limit and it's tied to the item penalty. On the daily leaderboards, you can often see high-ranking people sporting considerable amounts of schwag points, obtained through the means of some kind of "break", as well as many cheaters forging their bonuses as much as the integer limits allow them to.

The game computes the schwag bonus on every engine update, plus once more before showing the final score from a daily run, and it's defined as follows:

+-Minimap::Render()
| Game::End()
'-+-> ScoreSheet::Calculate()
    '~> ScoreSheet::get_swag_points_bonus()

SchwagBonus = GoldenHearts              // 12 max
            + 10 * (RedHeartsContainers // 24 max
                 +  RedHearts           // 24 max
                 +  SoulHearts          // 24 max
                 +  BlackHearts         // 12 max
                 +  EternalHearts       //  1 max
                 +  Coins)              // 99 max
            + 20 * (Keys + Bombs)       // 99 max
            + PickupBonus               // unlimited (???)

You can easily see how Schwag usually caps at 5,452 when not considering the PickupBonus.

The Pickup Bonus[]

Every time you collect a pickup that is used in the formula above (HP containers, any kind of heart, coins, bombs, keys and batteries) another value is computed: this value is uncapped and can reach the limits of a signed integer, and keeps the tally of everything you've picked up so far. Every consumable has its own value:

Entity_Pickup::handle_collision()
'-> ScoreSheet::AddPickup()
Pickup type Variant Points
Hearts Half Red 1
Eternal 1
Half Soul 1
Red 2
Soul 2
Black 2
Gold 2
Scared 2
Blended 2
Double 4
Coins Penny 1
Double 2
Lucky 2
Nickel 5
Dime 10
Bombs single 2
Double 4
Golden 35
Keys single 6*
Key Ring 4
Golden 35
Batteries

* bug, should be 2

Once this value is computed, the game will obtain a "final pickup bonus" to add to the formula above and return the definitive amount of Schwag:

p = pickup_bonus;
i = 1.0f;
j = 0.0f;

do {
    k = j;
    x = p < 100.0f ? p : 100.0f;
    j = ((x * i) * 2) + k;
    i *= 0.98;

    if (i <= 0.001f)
        break;

    p -= 100.0f;
} while (p > 0.0f)

In short, the game is taking the uncapped tally of all the pickups and computing a capped value out of it to somewhat limit the Schwag bonus by taking a 2% off at every iteration; that's the reason why Schwag bonus doesn't get much higher after a certain threshold. At around 34,500 pickup points Schwag will cap and no longer increase because $i (which is used to multiply the bonus) will only lead to a 0.1% increase on the total bonus (* 0.001), completely worthless and offset by both the time and item penalties munching at your points.

16,329 points seems to be the upper limit for the Schwag bonus. Adding more pickup points doesn't seem to affect it past that value, even with preposterous amounts (1,874,919,423) Schwag will always cap at 16,329.

Rush bonus[]

Rush bonus is awarded to the player upon obtaining the event flag relative to either clearing Boss Rush or killing Hush. Restarting the floor will clear the flag; therefore, it's not possible to obtain multiple bonuses — the maximum amount of obtainable points is fixed to 9,999 when clearing both events.

Event Points
Boss Rush 4,444
Hush 5,555

??? or Lamb Bonus[]

A 4,000 points bonus awarded for killing either ??? or The Lamb in a daily run. Restarting the floor by any mean will not allow the player to obtain multiple bonuses. Only one of the two bonuses is obtainable, for there are no ways to reach Chest Chest from Dark Room Dark Room and vice versa.

Mega Satan bonus[]

A 6,666 points bonus awarded to players after killing Mega Satan in a daily run (Sunday only, unless curated). Restarting the floor by any means will not allow the player to obtain multiple bonuses.

Damage penalty[]

Damage penalty is the amount of lost points for suffering damage in a daily run. Its formula is defined as follows:

Being tied to the exploration bonus, it means that getting hit once in the whole run bears different weights depending on how much you kill and explore:

  • getting hit once (1st floor, 1st room) and quitting the run: (10 exp. bonus) -1 damage penalty
  • getting hit once (1st floor, 1st room) and completing a full run: (20,000 exp. bonus) -295 damage penalty
  • an "average" run: (25 hits, 15k exp. bonus) -4,462 damage penalty
  • an "explore plenty, walk on spikes, eat bullets, dodge into enemies" run: (80 hits, 15k exp. bonus) -9,580 damage penalty

The same hit will come with a progressively heftier price the more rooms you explore and clear, and the more enemies you kill. Assuming the same number of hits and rooms explored, it doesn't matter if the hit happened in chapter 1 or chapter 4.

Some kind of hits count as twice the damage, ie: when getting hit by a Champion, walking on Spikes or otherwise losing a full heart by harm.

Exceptions[]

Not all forms of damage will add to the damage penalty, there are, in fact, many exceptions:

Time penalty[]

Time penalty is how many points you lose in a run for spending time clearing floors, and it varies according to the events you've cleared throughout the run.

The formula(s) behind time penalty are as follows:

TimePenalty = Floor(Ceil(((Rush_Bonus
                         + Mega_Satan_Bonus
                         + Lamb_Bonus
                         + XXX_Bonus
                         + Stage_Bonus) * 0.80) * (1.0 - SecondsPenalty)))

Where SecondsPenalty is:

 SecondsPenalty = Exp((Elapsed_Seconds * -0.22) / BaseStagePenalty)

And, in turn BaseStagePenalty is the sum of several fixed amounts of points per each stage and event, called "Expected Stage Times":

Stage reached / event Value
1 (Basement 1) 60
2 (Basement 2) 60
3 (Caves 1) 120
4 (Caves 2) 180
5 (Depths 1) 180
6 (Depths 2) 300
Boss rush cleared 240
7 (Womb 1) 300
8 (Womb 2) 360
9 (Blue Womb) 360
10 (Sheol / Cathedral)
11a (Dark Room / Chest) 420*
11b (Mega Satan) 420
12 (The Void)

* from killing Satan / Isaac in stage 10

Using a Forget Me Now or a 5-pips Dice room will not alter those values.

Item penalty[]

Item penalty is the amount of points lost for collecting items throughout the run. As far as the game is concerned, an item can be both a collectible (actives, passives) or a pickup (anything making up the Schwag bonus).

The formula is as follows:

where

where Ending is a "game ending status":

Ending Value
0 None
1 Game Over
2 Mom
3 The Womb
4 Sheol
5 Cathedral
6 Dark Room
7 The Chest
8 Mega Satan
9 Greed mode
10 ???
11 The Void

In short, the game rewards you for going further with as little as possible. Item penalty has an upper bound to ~80% of the Schwag bonus. Schwag bonus has a high impact on the Item penalty.

Curiously, quitting the run in the Void grants a slightly higher item penalty, as Ending will be set to "Game Over" (1), meaning the Item penalty will only be divided by 2.5.

Strategies[]

  • It's possible to obtain a full 20,000 Stage bonus even if the set objective is lower by using a sacrifice room.
  • The player should explore as much as possible, while still allowing time for Boss Rush and Hush to be completed. It is a good idea to find Secret and Super Secret Rooms, go into special rooms, and fight against Challenge Room enemies and Angels. Looking for Crawl Spaces is not advised in most cases, as bombs can usually be spent better elsewhere. Items that grant mapping or reveal secrets can be extremely useful for getting a high exploration bonus while clearing floors quickly.
  • Added in RepentanceSince Ultra Secret Rooms do not grant more of a bonus than regular rooms, it can be better for score to generate Red Rooms where they will grant access to Challenge Rooms, rather than to use them to look for the Ultra Secret Room.
  • Using a Sacrifice Room has a complex cost, starting with 1 hit per half a heart - meaning 2 hits per pop in most cases (no Wafer, no Percs, etc). A full teleport comes with at least 24 hits (or 12 if the damage can be halved somehow); however, teleporting does not raise your damage penalty as much as expected, because reaching the Dark Room via teleport doesn't add points to your exploration bonus, only to the stage bonus. Reaching The Lamb by exploring, though, does.
  • Added in Afterbirth † Gaining access to The Void The Void and killing Delirium counts as a won daily run, but it seems that no points are directly (floor bonus) earned for killing it. However, it has effects on the item penalty, as well as giving extra exploration bonuses.

Unlockable Achievements[]

  • Dedication
    Added in Afterbirth † Dedication - Participate in 31 Daily Challenges (they don't have to be consecutive; it will still count if Isaac dies in the first room).

Trivia[]

  • On December 6, every year, Isaac is reskinned as former Nintendo president Satoru Iwata as tribute. December 6 was also Iwata's birthday. He has the same stats as Isaac, but starts with The Gamekid The Gamekid and Cartridge Cartridge.

Gallery[]


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