Hard mode changes the gameplay compared to Normal in some ways to make it more difficult. When playing in Hard mode, a small red pentagram ( HardIndicator.png) appears on the HUD, below the pickups.

Differences

  • 2-3 more rooms generate each floor.
  • Dlc nr indicator.png Standard rooms with a difficulty of "1" cannot generate.
    • Dlc r indicator.png Standard rooms with a difficulty of "1" have a reduced chance of appearing.
    • Most rooms with this difficulty are very easy, making difficult rooms more common.
  • Enemies have a base 20% chance to become Champions instead of only 5%; additionally, they only award pickups 33% of the time.
  • Dlc nr indicator.png Hearts are 66% less likely to drop after completing a room.
    • Dlc r indicator.pngHearts are 33% less likely to drop after completing a room.
  • Dlc nr indicator.png Only champion bosses will drop hearts; normal bosses will not.
  • Floors are more likely to have curses.
  • Blood Donation Machines only give out one coin per use.
    • Dlc r indicator.png Also applies to IV Bag.
  • Beggars require a minimum of 6 donations before paying out.
    • Dlc r indicator.png This doesn't apply to Bomb Bums or Key Masters.
  • Dlc r indicator.png Lower levels of shop can appear even if the store upgrades have been unlocked.
  • Dlc r indicator.pngThe drop rate of soul heart from blue fires is 10%, while it's 25% in normal mode.
  • Dlc r indicator.png Certain enemies and bosses have increased shot and movement speed.
  • Dlc r indicator.png Collectible Dogma icon.png Dogma does not provide the effect of Collectible The Wafer icon.png The Wafer.

Unlocks for Hard Mode

Character Mom's Heart Dlc a indicator.png All completion marks
Character Isaac icon.png Isaac Achievement Lost Baby icon.png Achievement Buddy Baby icon.png
Character Magdalene icon.png Magdalene Achievement Cute Baby icon.png Achievement Colorful Baby icon.png
Character Cain icon.png Cain Achievement Glass Baby icon.png Achievement Picky Baby icon.png
Character Judas icon.png Judas Achievement Shadow Baby icon.png Achievement Belial Baby icon.png
Character ??? (Character) icon.png ??? Achievement Dead Baby icon.png Achievement Hive Baby icon.png
Character Eve icon.png Eve Achievement Crow Baby icon.png Achievement Whore Baby icon.png
Character Samson icon.png Samson Achievement Fighting Baby icon.png Achievement Revenge Baby icon.png
Character Azazel icon.png Azazel Achievement Begotten Baby icon.png Achievement Sucky Baby icon.png
Character Lazarus icon.png Lazarus Achievement Wrapped Baby icon.png

Dlc r indicator.png Character Bethany icon.png Bethany (without losing a life)

Achievement Dripping Baby icon.png
Character Eden icon.png Eden Achievement Glitch Baby icon.png Achievement Cracked Baby icon.png
Character The Lost icon.png The Lost Achievement -0- Baby icon.png Achievement Godhead icon.png
Dlc a indicator.png Character Lilith icon.png Lilith Achievement Goat Head Baby icon.png Achievement Dark Baby icon.png
Dlc a indicator.png Character Keeper icon.png Keeper Achievement Super Greed Baby icon.png Achievement Sale Baby icon.png
Dlc a† indicator.png Character Apollyon icon.png Apollyon Achievement Smelter icon.png Achievement Apollyon Baby icon.png
Dlc a† indicator.png Character The Forgotten icon.png The Forgotten Achievement Marrow icon.png Achievement Bone Baby icon.png
Dlc r indicator.png Character Bethany icon.png Bethany Achievement Wisp Baby icon.png Achievement Hope Baby icon.png
Dlc r indicator.png Character Jacob and Esau icon.png Jacob and Esau Achievement Double Baby icon.png Achievement Solomon's Baby icon.png
Dlc r indicator.png All non-Tainted characters Achievement Mega Mush icon.png
Dlc r indicator.png All characters Achievement Death Certificate icon.png

Trivia

  • Before update 1.03, the reduced drop-rate affected all pickups (not just Red Hearts).
  • For update 4.00 hard mode also reduced the amount of tinted rocks appearing. This was removed with 4.01 a few days later.
  • Most Hard mode unlocks are co-op babies, with the notable exceptions of Collectible Godhead icon.png Godhead, Dlc a† indicator.png Collectible Smelter icon.png Smelter, Dlc a† indicator.png Collectible Marrow icon.png Marrow, Dlc r indicator.png Collectible Mega Mush icon.png Mega Mush, Dlc r indicator.png Collectible Death Certificate icon.png Death Certificate and the character Dlc r indicator.png Character Bethany icon.png Bethany.
  • Collectible Godhead icon.png Godhead's unlock requirements were extended in later DLCs due to the addition of more completion marks, but it can still be unlocked in the base game using the same method.
  • Dlc r indicator.png None of the tainted characters have unlocks tied to getting all completion marks, apart from Collectible Death Certificate icon.png Death Certificate.

SmallIsaac.png The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth SmallIsaac.png
MainPageAchievements.png Achievements MainPageAttributes.png Attributes MainPageBosses.png Bosses TarotCard.png Cards and Runes MainPageChallenges.png Challenges MainPageChapters.png Chapters
Character Isaac appearance.png Characters MainPageBabies.png Co-op MainPageItems Small.png Items Collectible Isaac's Tears icon.png Item pools MainPageMonsters.png Monsters MainPageObjects.png Objects
Red Heart.png Pickups BlueBlue.png Pills MainPageRooms.png Rooms MainPageSeeds2.png Seeds Transformation Guppy appearance.png Transformations Trinket The Left Hand icon.png Trinkets
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