Binding of Isaac: Rebirth Wiki
Binding of Isaac: Rebirth Wiki
and Esau
Full red heartFull red heartFull red heartFull soul heartFull red heart
Table dividing line 1.png
Damage Stat Icon.png Damage
2.75 (*1.00)
3.75 (*1.00)
Tears Stat Icon.png Tears
Shot Speed Stat Icon.png Shot Speed
Range Stat Icon.png Range
Speed Stat Icon.png Speed
Luck Stat Icon.png Luck
Table dividing line 2.png
Starting Items
Starting Item Icon.png PickupsNoneNone
Starting Item Icon.png ItemsNoneNone
Unlock Method
Jacob and Esau Defeat Mother
Added in Repentance

Jacob & Esau are a character pair added in The Binding of Isaac: Repentance. They are unlocked by defeating Mother with any character.

Jacob & Esau are controlled as one, move at the same speed, and use the same coins, bombs, and keys. Otherwise, they are completely independent in terms of stats, items, and health. Both characters have collision and can be separated, though the "Drop" button can be held to keep Esau in place while Jacob is free to move around the room.

Due to the way Jacob and Esau work, active items and cards/pills have a different button scheme than other characters. Active items are used by pressing the normal active item button for Jacob and the card/pill button for Esau. To use cards and pills, the player holds the drop button and then presses the corresponding character's active item buttons.

If either Jacob or Esau die, they both die regardless of the other character's remaining health.


  • If one character passes through a door, both characters move to the next room. Curse door damage will only be applied to the character that moves through the door.
  • With careful positioning, it is possible to take two items in rooms with multiple items that usually disappear upon collecting one (Ex: The Polaroid The Polaroid & The Negative The Negative). As a result, if the player can handle the increased difficulty from these optional chapter paths, item rooms in Downpour Downpour, Mines Mines, and Mausoleum Mausoleum (including their alternative variants) have double their normal value.
  • Changes to the speed stat are only half as effective, but the stat is shared between the two characters.
  • When placing a bomb, both Jacob and Esau place one, but only one bomb will be consumed.
    • If Jacob obtains Remote Detonator Remote Detonator, only the bombs placed by Jacob are affected; bombs placed by Esau will explode as normal and cannot be controlled by the detonator.
  • When Jacob and Esau sleep in a bed, only the one who touched the bed will be healed.
  • Only the character that picks up an activated item first gets the progress for related transformations, so the player needs to be aware of what character needs the transformation progress.
  • Transforming into a new character with items like Clicker Clicker or Judas' Shadow Judas' Shadow will grant either Jacob or Esau's collected items to that character, from the one that activated the transformation.
  • Dice rooms with 1 or 6 pips will reroll held items of both characters regardless of whoever triggered the room.
  • Key Piece 1 Key Piece 1/Key Piece 2 Key Piece 2 and Knife Piece 1 Knife Piece 1/Knife Piece 2 Knife Piece 2 will combine regardless of whether they are split up or carried by one character.
  • Devil deals are slightly less beneficial for Jacob and Esau, as the prices will dynamically change based on only one of them, making it so the other may not be able to take the deal. For example: if one of them takes a deal that leaves him with no red hearts, the other deals will change prices to accommodate for the lack of red hearts, so if the other only has red hearts, he will not be able to take the deal. [More research needed]
  • Despite flying items like Fate Fate only affecting the one who picked it up, it's still very useful if you only focus on the brother that is NOT using it, as the flying one will never get caught on obstacles.
  • For the purposes of Room Clear Awards, the room drop rate depends on the total luck the 2 characters have. Meaning at base stats, they effectively start with 0 Luck for this purpose.

Item Interactions[]

If not listed here, and if applicable, an item will always apply all its effects on the character who picks/uses it only

  • Birthright Birthright: The character who picks up the item gains copies of three of the other character's latest picked up passive items. Note that items that add pickups, such as A Quarter, will not add pickups again when copied.
  • Bone Spurs Bone Spurs: Bone projectiles spawn when either brother kills an enemy.
  • Eden's Blessing Eden's Blessing: Items gained through Eden's Blessing at the start of the run will only be given to Jacob.
  • Dead Cat Dead Cat: Only the character that takes it will be reduced to one heart container, but if either of the characters die, both characters are resurrected with one heart container.
    • If Esau is the one who picks up Dead Cat, it will not be removed when the life counter is exhausted, granting unlimited extra lives.
  • Dr. Fetus Dr. Fetus: Tears from Jacob can interfere with aiming bombs fired by Esau and vice versa. Be cautious when taking this item.
  • Infestation 2 Infestation 2: Blue Spiders will spawn from enemies killed by either character.
  • Isaac's Heart Isaac's Heart: Only the character who picks up the item gets the benefits.
  • Lachryphagy Lachryphagy: Both character's tears will feed the shot, regardless of which character picked it up.
  • Luna Luna: The character who doesn't have Luna can also use the beams of light.
  • Lusty Blood Lusty Blood: The character who picked up the item will get a damage boost when an enemy is killed regardless of which character gets the kill.
  • PHD PHD: All pills will be identified for both characters, but only the character who picked up the item will have the negative effects turned into the good ones.
  • Star of Bethlehem Star of Bethlehem: Both Jacob and Esau gain the stats of this item, making it extremely favorable as it essentially is twice as effective.
  • Taurus Taurus: The speed changes apply for both characters, but only the character that is holding Taurus gains invincibility.
  • Technology Zero Technology Zero: Connects both character's tears with electricity, even if only one character has the item.
  • There's Options There's Options: If both characters are lined up and touch both item pedestals at the same time, they can both get an item.
  • Death Certificate Death Certificate: Two items can be taken from any given room, one for each character, if they're taken at the same time.

Unlockable Achievements[]


  • Jacob & Esau are the twin sons of Isaac from the Book of Genesis. Esau is described as being "red all over" when he was born, hence why his skin is red in this game. The reason why Esau has a sorrowful grimace may be of a story in Genesis where Esau was dying of hunger after an unsuccessful hunt, in which he asked Jacob to make him something to eat, but in return, Jacob wanted the heirloom blessing of his father, which had been bestowed upon Esau. Esau accepted the offering and regretted his choice afterward.
  • Jacob & Esau stats reflect how they are described in the Book of Genesis, where Esau is stronger than his brother but more unfortunate than Jacob.
  • Esau resembles the Dople monster (In both coloration and the distinct face pattern visible on the cheeks on Esau.) who mimics Isaac's movements in a similar way to how Esau mimics Jacob's movements. On top of this, they both fire blood shots.
  • Only Jacob's items will be listed in the pause menu.
  • Active items involved in Transformations count only for the character who touched the item first. This is most notable with books for the Bookworm transformation: each character needs 3 different books.



Bug Bug! Using multiple controllers and changing them while a game is in progress may cause several issues, such as confusing player slots and unlinking their deaths from each other. The control may also end up stuck on a third controller that is not available. It may also result in being able to move each character independently of each other with keyboard being able to move one and controller move the other.

The infinite item exploit in Co-Op has since been patched in v4.0.1, and can no longer be used. However, two items will still spawn.

Bug Bug! Depending on which controller presses Continue, Esau will take two different forms.

- If "Player 1" presses Continue, Esau will remain as he is.

- If "Player 2" presses Continue, Jacob will instead have Esau's Health, and Esau will become a white-haired Jacob instead, including his stats.

Bug Bug! If Jacob and Esau are being controlled independently of each other and the item Genesis Genesis is used, an additional Esau, linked to Jacob, will spawn. This Esau will behave as the character normally does, moving in the same way as Jacob and causing both of them to die if one of them does.
Bug Bug! If Jacob enters a portal made by Ventricle Razor Ventricle Razor while Esau enters another room, Esau loses ability to shoot, and no longer has collision with Jacob, however, both characters can take damage and pick up items. This can be fixed by using Ventricle Razor again.
Bug Bug! If Jacob or Esau uses Glowing Hour Glass Glowing Hour Glass at the starting room without going into any other rooms (using the Debug Console or Eden's Blessing Eden's Blessing), Jacob will be the only player character and Esau will be removed for the rest of the run.
Bug Bug! If Esau is holding Soul of Lazarus Soul of Lazarus when either Jacob or Esau dies, they will be respawned in place WITHOUT consuming the Soul of Lazarus item. This effect will continue to cause respawns at death as long as Esau is the one holding it..