Binding of Isaac: Rebirth Wiki
Tainted   Forgotten
and Tainted Soul
Tainted Forgotten
Tainted Soul
InvulnerableFull soul heartFull soul heartFull soul heart
Table dividing line 1
Damage Stat Icon Damage
3.5 (* 1.50)
Tears Stat Icon Tears
+0; x1/2
Shot Speed Stat Icon Shot Speed
Range Stat Icon Range
Speed Stat Icon Speed
Luck Stat Icon Luck
Table dividing line 2
Starting Items
Starting Item Icon PickupsNoneNone
Starting Item Icon ItemsNoneNone
Unlock Method
The Fettered Use Collectible Red Key iconRed Key (etc.) to open the hidden closet in (in Repentance)HomeHome as Character The Forgotten iconThe Forgotten
(in Repentance)

Tainted Forgotten and Tainted Soul are Characters added in The Binding of Isaac: Repentance. They are the tainted versions of Character The Forgotten iconThe Forgotten and Character The Soul (Character) iconThe Soul. Tainted Forgotten is unlocked by reaching HomeHome and using the Collectible Red Key iconRed Key, Cracked KeyCracked Key, or Soul of CainSoul of Cain to access a special room in the left hallway while playing as The Forgotten.

Notes[ | ]

  • Both characters always co-exist and depend on each other; Tainted Soul is incapable of firing tears or dealing damage in almost any manner, and likewise, Tainted Forgotten is incapable of moving on their own. Tainted Soul is able to pick up and move around with, or throw, Tainted Forgotten, similar to how one holds and throws Collectible Bob's Rotten Head iconBob's Rotten Head. Otherwise, Tainted Forgotten has a melee bone weapon like Character The Forgotten iconThe Forgotten does, which he can swing and throw while on the ground.
    • Tainted Forgotten will swing his bone at the same time Tainted Soul throws him, and this swing will deal 3x the normal damage, and the impact itself will deal 5 damage.
  • Tainted Forgotten is also completely invulnerable, and instead, Tainted Soul acts as his 'hitbox' and will take damage like any character. Both characters share the same pool of Soul HeartSoul Hearts (they cannot have Red HeartRed Heart Containers), and if the last one is lost, they both die.
  • Enemies almost always target Tainted Soul and ignore Tainted Forgotten, but the latter's body can be used to block enemy projectiles and movement.
  • Both share the same pool of pickups, similar to Character The Forgotten iconThe Forgotten. Tainted Forgotten can pick up items and consumables when he's thrown at them, as well as open Chests or unlock doors.
  • Tainted Forgotten can be thrown into a door to enter the next room (including Curse RoomCurse Rooms, which deal no damage to Tainted Forgotten), and after entering a room, Tainted Soul will always be holding him. With practice, they can very rapidly traverse the floor, spending a fraction of a second in any cleared room.
  • When placing a BombBomb, it will be placed underneath Tainted Forgotten, and the same is true when dropping trinkets or Cards, etc.
  • Any items picked up will normally behave as if Tainted Forgotten picked them up and don't directly affect Tainted Soul; for example, orbital familiars will orbit Tainted Forgotten. Speed upgrades on the other hand will apply to Tainted Soul, among other examples. Effects that grant invincibility, i.e. Collectible Book of Shadows iconBook of Shadows, will apply to Tainted Soul, whether or not there's visual indication of this.
  • Tainted Soul can open the door to MausoleumMausoleum / GehennaGehenna without losing any health while not holding Tainted Forgotten.
  • If Tainted Soul picks up Tainted Forgotten while the latter is charging a bone toss, it will throw it once the player releases the attack button.
  • If Tainted Forgotten's range reaches high enough numbers, his melee bone swing will occur away from him, which can result in an inability to deal damage to enemies too close to him.
  • BulbBulbs will never attack both Tainted Forgotten or Tainted Soul.

Strategy[ | ]

  • In order to one-throw-kill as many enemies as possible, Tainted Forgotten's build should be focus on Damage. Having high Speed is also important, as it makes Tainted Soul to pick Tainted Forgotten up easier. Tears and Range are less useful normally for Tainted Forgotten.
  • Items that enhance melee attack radius (such as size up items, Collectible Chocolate Milk iconChocolate Milk, Collectible Mutant Spider iconMutant Spider, Collectible Technology iconTechnology) are also recommended. Items that split tears on hit like Collectible Haemolacria iconHaemolacria benefits well too.
  • Area of effect damage such as Collectible Monstrance iconMonstrance and Collectible 120 Volt icon120 Volt apply their effect to Tainted Forgotten, making them incredibly powerful for large crowds and stationary bosses.
  • Care should be taken when fighting enemies spawned in Devil RoomDevil Rooms, ShopShops and Black MarketBlack Markets, as Tainted Forgotten will buy anything he's thrown into if possible, with potentially fatal results.
  • Some pills don't work or are irrelevant because they apply their effects to Tainted Forgotten. Paralysis is one example.
  • Be careful of Mom's HandMom's Hands, because they can grab Tainted Forgotten. This will deal no damage, but will still cause teleportation back to the starting room.
  • Tainted Soul can open Mimic chest RepentanceMimic Chests without taking damage.
  • Tainted Soul can activate the stop button in Greed Mode without taking damage, at the price of one less coin spawning in the next wave's reward. Tainted Forgotten's body can also be used to activate the button, which does not cost a coin.
  • Tainted Soul can pass through the mirror in DownpourDownpour / DrossDross II without touching the White Fire PlaceWhite Fire Place (in fact, nothing happens when he flies over it), and will keep his life bar, which makes the trek considerably safer.
    • If Tainted Forgotten is thrown into the White Fire Place, he transforms into Character The Lost iconThe Lost (though he is still invulnerable); Tainted Soul will have Collectible Holy Mantle iconHoly Mantle protection (if unlocked), but will die if damage is taken after it's broken like normal.
  • Items that inflict Fear like Collectible Mom's Perfume iconMom's Perfume and Collectible 2Spooky icon2Spooky should be avoided, because enemies will flee from Tainted Forgotten instead of Tainted Soul, making it harder to hit enemies while also offering Tainted Soul little protection.
  • Charmed enemies may pursue Tainted Forgotten instead of other enemies, which can be ideal for bringing and keeping them within range of his melee attack.
  • Tear effects from items such as Collectible Euthanasia iconEuthanasia and Collectible Sulfuric Acid iconSulfuric Acid can activate both on the body throws and on the melee attack.
  • All contact damage attacks such as Collectible Aries iconAries and Collectible The Virus iconThe Virus are tripled in strength and will apply when throwing Tainted Forgotten. The damage is added on top of the normal 5 points his body impact does. Tainted Soul however does not benefit from them at all.

Item Interactions[ | ]

  • Collectible Birthright iconBirthright: Gives the pocket item Collectible Recall iconRecall, which will pull Tainted Forgotten into Tainted Soul's hands regardless of distance.
    • Collectible Habit iconHabit, Collectible 9 Volt icon9 Volt and Collectible The Battery iconThe Battery are extremely useful for speeding up recharge time, allowing for quicker room clearing.
  • Collectible Brimstone iconBrimstone: Replaces the bone throw with a short-range brimstone orb.
  • Collectible Bum Friend iconBum Friend, Collectible Dark Bum iconDark Bum and Collectible Key Bum iconKey Bum will drop pickup to Tainted Forgotten, not Tainted Soul.
  • Collectible Gnawed Leaf iconGnawed Leaf: Activates when Tainted Forgotten is not moving. While active, Tainted Soul is also invulnerable. Carrying Tainted Forgotten around by Tainted Soul does not count for it as moving, which means that Tainted Soul will be invulnerable while moving with Tainted Forgotten above its head.
  • Collectible Chocolate Milk iconChocolate Milk: Instead of throwing Tainted Forgotten instantly, the throw can be charged, which powers up Tainted Forgotten's bone club before throwing them.
  • Collectible Damocles iconDamocles: Hangs over the Forgotten. Despite Forgotten's invulnerability, the sword will kill him, necessitating an external source of invulnerability from items such as Collectible Gnawed Leaf iconGnawed Leaf, Sigil of BaphometSigil of Baphomet, Collectible Book of Shadows iconBook of Shadows, etc. Damage negating items such as Collectible Holy Mantle iconHoly Mantle will not stop the sword either.
  • Collectible Dr. Fetus iconDr. Fetus: Charging an attack will spawn a bomb underneath Tainted Forgotten, which he can fling by swinging again.
  • Collectible E. Coli iconE. Coli / Collectible Midas' Touch iconMidas' Touch: Applies when Tainted Forgotten is thrown, dealing much more damage.
  • Collectible Epic Fetus iconEpic Fetus: After being thrown or while sitting around, holding a fire button will prompt Tainted Forgotten to hold a missile and draw a crosshair that travels in the direction being 'fired' in (similar to how Collectible Marked iconMarked works). When the desired distance is reached, let go of the fire button and Tainted Forgotten will chuck the missile in an arc to that location. The missile will not be thrown until the fire button is released. This has no effect on the melee attack.
  • Collectible Esau Jr. iconEsau Jr.: The Forgotten turns into Esau who gains 3 black hearts and greatly enhanced melee speed. Best if used as early as possible to avoid having future items randomized.
  • Collectible Guillotine iconGuillotine: Potentially adds more contact damage when the skeleton is thrown on an enemy.
  • Collectible How to Jump iconHow to Jump: Will drastically increase Tainted Forgotten's launch distance when used while being thrown.
  • Collectible Ipecac iconIpecac: Tainted Forgotten's bone club will cause explosion when hitting enemies. When he is thrown the explosion may also cause him to ricochet backwards, making retrieval much easier.
  • Collectible Isaac's Heart iconIsaac's Heart: Causes the heart to follow Tainted Soul instead.
  • Collectible Jupiter iconJupiter: Acts solely as a speed boost with no fart effects.
  • Collectible Kamikaze! iconKamikaze!: Tainted Forgotten is the one who explodes, not Tainted Soul, allowing unlimited use with no downsides as long as the latter keeps his distance.
  • Collectible Kidney Stone iconKidney Stone: Similarly to Character The Forgotten iconThe Forgotten, passing a kidney stone will fire a projectile and cause Tainted Forgotten to swing the bone club rapidly for the effect's duration.
  • Collectible Lead Pencil iconLead Pencil: Will fire the Lead pencil shot on the 15th swing of the bone club. Holding down the fire button will cause Tainted Forgotten to both swing and charge the bone club. Swinging, then charging and firing, counts as two swings.
  • Collectible Lemegeton iconLemegeton: Despite the Wisps orbiting the invulnerable Tainted Forgotten, they still take damage unless the Tainted Soul is invulnerable.
  • Collectible Lost Soul iconLost Soul: It is almost impossible to keep the ghost alive, as it follows Tainted Forgotten into danger, not Tainted Soul.
  • Collectible Tooth and Nail iconTooth and Nail: Contact damage applies only to Tainted Forgotten, but invincibility is applied to Tainted Soul.
  • Collectible The Ludovico Technique iconThe Ludovico Technique: Spawns a floating tear that slowly and loosely floats towards Tainted Forgotten. If struck with a melee attack, it will grow in size and be launched outwards, dealing damage if it strikes something, before returning again.
  • Collectible Mars iconMars: Tainted Forgotten will dash when Tainted Soul triggers it; can be used to control him from a distance. It doesn't trigger when Tainted Soul holds Tainted Forgotten.
  • Collectible Mercurius iconMercurius: Allows Tainted Soul to enter a room and immediately throw Tainted Forgotten into the next door, rapidly skipping most of the floor.
  • Collectible My Reflection iconMy Reflection: All projectiles that would be affected by this item will return to where Tainted Forgotten is.
  • Collectible Night Light iconNight Light: The light held by Tainted Forgotten will always face right.
  • Panic ButtonPanic Button: Active item is used whenever Tainted Forgotten touches an enemy, regardless of damage taken.
  • Collectible Pluto iconPluto (or any size down effect): Makes Tainted Forgotten smaller, thus making it harder to hit anything by throwing him, while leaving Tainted Soul the same size.
  • Collectible Rocket in a Jar iconRocket in a Jar: The bomb will be a rocket only if placed while Tainted Forgotten is being thrown in the air or while charging the bone throw attack, and will follow the same direction.
  • Collectible Salvation iconSalvation: Incredibly powerful, as the ring will be around the Forgotten.
  • Collectible Samson's Chains iconSamson's Chains: The chain will attach itself to Tainted Forgotten, allowing Tainted Soul to hide in rocks after throwing him. This also allows safe destruction of potentially damaging objects such as Mushrooms and Polyps.
  • Collectible Serpent's Kiss iconSerpent's Kiss: The poison touch will affect Tainted Forgotten and will have a chance to drop black hearts upon the foe's death.
  • Collectible Stitches iconStitches: Will only teleport Tainted Forgotten, which can be used to more accurately reposition Tainted Forgotten without putting Tainted Soul in a difficult position.
  • Collectible Strange Attractor iconStrange Attractor: Will cause enemies to be pulled towards Tainted Forgotten. This is very useful, since it makes dealing damage to enemies easier and protects Tainted Soul, pulling them away and blocking more of their shots.
  • Collectible Technology 2 iconTechnology 2 / Collectible Tech.5 iconTech.5: Gives Tainted Forgotten long-range laser attack.
  • Collectible Tech X iconTech X: If thrown, Tainted Forgotten's club is surrounded by a ring-shaped laser.
    • Tech X + Collectible Cursed Eye iconCursed Eye: Overrides Tech X. When charged, Tainted Forgotten swings club rapidly without the laser.
  • Collectible Uranus iconUranus: Enemies that die due to Tainted Forgotten being thrown at them will also be frozen, and their frozen bodies will usually be knocked into other enemies, causing an ice cascade.
  • Collectible Ventricle Razor iconVentricle Razor: Portals created can be used both while Tainted Soul is holding Tainted Forgotten, which will warp them both, and when Tainted Forgotten is thrown in the portal by himself, which will not warp Tainted Soul; can be very effective for repositioning, especially during boss fights.
  • Collectible Venus iconVenus: Perpetually charms enemies close to Tainted Forgotten, which synergizes well with the fact that charmed enemies can home in on him, keeping them charmed and in melee range (and away from Tainted Soul) until killed or distracted by another target.
  • Collectible White Pony iconWhite Pony: Can be used only when Tainted Soul is holding Tainted Forgotten or when Tainted Forgotten was just thrown. Doing so will make a trail of light beams behind Tainted Forgotten as he moves instead of executing the usual charge attack. This makes it possible to deal much more damage with one charge, as Tainted Soul can move the Tainted Forgotten on top of an enemy to make every light beam land on them.
  • RC RemoteRC Remote: Familiars will move with Tainted Soul, and not follow behind Tainted Forgotten like they normally do. This is massively beneficial as it allows Tainted Soul to have actual protection against enemies. Orbitals still remain orbiting Tainted Forgotten as expected.
  • Collectible Broken Shovel 1 iconBroken Shovel: The feet stomping down on Isaac will aim for Tainted Forgotten, not Tainted Soul.
  • Collectible Spirit Sword iconSpirit Sword: No effect.

Unlockable Items[ | ]

Gallery[ | ]

Trivia[ | ]

  • Using the console command "restart 40" starts a new run as only Tainted Soul; he's still unable to fire and otherwise acts identically to Character The Lost iconThe Lost, dying in one hit. It's not normally possible to play the game this way, and the game will crash if Tainted Soul dies while not linked to Tainted Forgotten.
  • Tainted Soul bears resemblance to a scrapped character from Antibirth named Edith. The mechanic used by Tainted Forgotten also resembles one planned mechanic Edith was going to have.
    • It was confirmed by both Kilburn[1] and Edmund McMillen[2] that Edith ultimately evolved into Tainted Forgotten during development.
  • Certain transformations such as GuppyGuppy cause Tainted Forgotten to have the transformation's body sprite, making him stand up-right.
  • The achievement for unlocking Tainted Forgotten is "The Fettered", a possible title for the character.
    • "Fettered" means "bound" or "shackled", which may be linked to how Tainted Forgotten cannot move on his own and only through Tainted Soul.
    • "Fettered" can also mean "restrained with chains", in a complete irony that while Tainted Forgotten and Tainted Soul are no longer physically connected to each other by chains, they are unable to progress the basement without each other, making them metaphorically chained to each other.
    • According to the Binding of Isaac card game: four souls, the Tainted Soul Is labeled As “The Fettered” while Tainted Forgotten Alone is the Dead Weight.
  • The character's main mechanic of picking up and carrying around a pile of bones could be a reference to Exodus 13:19, in which Moses carries the bones of Joseph with him on his journey with the other Israelites.
  • Defeating Boss Ultra Greedier ingameUltra Greedier as Tainted Forgotten unlocks XIII - Death?XIII - Death?, a reversed Major Arcana card associated with longing for an end but not getting it and having to persist without that satisfaction. This could be seen as Isaac not getting an end to his story and having to exist while carrying his bones with him.
  • Tainted Forgotten's starting health is listed as "-I" on the character selection screen.

Bugs[ | ]

Bug Bug! EvisEvis can grab Tainted Soul. If Tainted Forgotten is not nearby, it can result in Tainted Soul having no way to kill the enemy.
Bug Bug! Gaping MawGaping Maws and Broken Gaping MawBroken Gaping Maws can pull Tainted Forgotten inside them, rendering Tainted Soul unable to pick him up.
Bug Bug! In rooms with reflective floors, while the Tainted Forgotten is being held, the reflection shows it below the Tainted Soul instead of over it, though its bone club is in the correct position.

References[ | ]