Posted by Jeust (10855 posts) 1 year, 5 months ago

Poll: Which game is harder? Binding of Isaac or FTL? (194 votes)

Binding of Isaac 28%
FTL 48%
Can't decide. 6%
I want to see the results! 18%

Which game is harder in your opinion?

#1 Posted by fazzle (308 posts) -

I've run through Binding of Isaac multiple times no problem. I have NO IDEA what I'm doing in FTL, therefore I vote FTL.

#2 Posted by SexyToad (2722 posts) -

FTL, in binding of issac, there's always seems to be a lot of upgrades around for you, while in FTL, you slowly build up, but yet any fight can kill you.

#3 Posted by Jeust (10855 posts) -

Personally I think FTL is harder. If you don't have good luck in the build up of your ship, no matter of luck will change the eventual course of your ship - death. In Binding of Isaac, luck really helps, but quick reaction can tip the scales of any faceoff in your favor.

#4 Posted by Joeyoe31 (820 posts) -

Even after upgrades, fights in FTL can kill you if you're not paying attention. Binding of Isaac starts off hard but has a downwards difficulty spike. With a couple of good upgrades and good reactions you'll be seeing the end of the game in no time.

#5 Edited by rebgav (1429 posts) -

BoI is a bit more skill-based, so you can get by even if RNGsus has forsaken you. In FTL you're much more reliant on the right drops coming at the right time so I'd say that's much more arbitrary and difficult.

#6 Posted by envane (1164 posts) -

id say issac rests somewhere between easy and normal modes of ftl

both rely on rng pretty heavily to achieve a "good" run , but even with the right items ftl needs more skill

#7 Posted by crusader8463 (14428 posts) -

Issac. FTL gets pretty easy when you learn how to take advantage of the AI. Every time I play Issac though I can never get upgrades that are any good so it's always way harder than it needs to be.

#8 Edited by Fredchuckdave (6136 posts) -

FTL is much more difficult as it isn't a straight forward dual joystick shooter without joysticks; that said both games come down to luck a lot of the time, though it's theoretically possible to be good enough at Isaac that you somehow never lose and the same can't be said for FTL.

#9 Posted by HerpDerp (133 posts) -

@crusader8463: I agree. Once you realize what aliens benefit each part of your ship, the game becomes much easier. I use rock guys by my oxygen, mantises by my airlocks, and if I get lucky, I put some Engies and Zoltans by my shields/engines.

#10 Edited by Irvandus (2879 posts) -

FTL by far.

#11 Posted by dudeglove (8270 posts) -

Binding of Isaac got way 'harder' with the DLC update, but it didn't make it harder as so much as fuck up certain things, or make it easier to re-roll certain items. Also some of the DLC enemies are outright bullshit.

I eventually cheat-engined to get a couple of dumb achievements for the S-Rank - specifically getting through womb and sheol with no damage - and haven't touched it since (FYI prior to the cheat engine I had clocked nearly 300 hours on steam). I also doubt the randomness of the actual items. Freeze/slow and Tech 2 combo came up way too much for my liking.

It's a great game to play if you're watching GB videos or podcasts or whatever. I just picked up FTL in the steam sale, so I can't add anything that end, but it seems there are way more factors at play in FTL, whereas BoI is, like others said, skill-based.

#12 Posted by BeachThunder (12403 posts) -

Depends on what you mean. To just beat the final boss in Isaac, it's not too hard; but, being able to beat the final final final boss in Isaac is insane.

Also, FTL has a scant handful of optimal paths; you can basically figure out how to finish it and then just attempt to progress towards that goal. The game could be considered an action game; however, you do have the ability to pause.

Binding of Isaac, on the other hand, can get incredibly hard - some rooms (particularly bosses) become 'bullet hell'.

#13 Posted by Demoskinos (15133 posts) -

So how insane is normal on FTL? Probaly going to jump in forr the first time this week sometime.

#14 Posted by joshthebear (2700 posts) -

FTL can be so random sometimes, that you can't really anticipate anything.

#15 Edited by Ares42 (2795 posts) -

I found FTL to get very formulaic after a while. You know exactly what to do, it's just a matter if you can get the scrap. Sure there's some minor variety in weapons available, but most of them fall within 2-3 categories of usage. BOI on the other hand has a much larger variety, and while that certainly means you'll get some "free" runs now and then you generally need to be more flexible and every run is a different challenge.

So I'd say BOI is harder, not necessarily because it's a bigger challenge, but it requires more skill to adapt properly. (also, a large part of the difficulty of FTL comes from the terrible ship unlock mechanic).

#16 Posted by GERALTITUDE (3532 posts) -

@herpderp said:

@crusader8463: I agree. Once you realize what aliens benefit each part of your ship, the game becomes much easier. I use rock guys by my oxygen, mantises by my airlocks, and if I get lucky, I put some Engies and Zoltans by my shields/engines.

This is supposing you have any of these aliens . This requires a) unlocking ships and/or b) getting lucky with random encounters.

#17 Edited by Fredchuckdave (6136 posts) -

@demoskinos: It's not necessarily insane it just has a learning curve, with the best ship and perfect play you have a roughly 50% chance of success, with the worst ship it's more like 5-10% The 2 ships you start with are both pretty good and the alternate form of the first ship (unlocked by getting ship achievements) is fantastic. Normal isn't so bad that you have to play easy to learn how to play prior to that, however going through on Easy simply to unlock ships is definitely preferable. The first few times you face the final boss fight it will be intimidating but you'll gradually figure out one of a few methods to take it down reliably; you'll have scrap to spare on easy but you might just plain not have a good enough build on normal.

#18 Posted by ichthy (584 posts) -

The WoL DLC for BoI made the game ridiculously harder, to the point where I don't really enjoy playing it as much.

#19 Posted by rebgav (1429 posts) -

with the best ship and perfect play you have a roughly 50% chance of success

Nah, I've seen LethalFrag demolish FTL in run after run. If you know the game well enough the odds are more like 9/1 in the player's favor but that requires putting in serious time with the game. Frag eventually retired the game from his stream after completing no-pause runs with all ships.

#20 Posted by Fredchuckdave (6136 posts) -

@rebgav: Well if you know literally every event by percentile and every shop layout with respect to sectors then sure, I'm just saying with a reasonable amount of time put in that's right around the results you'll see. I'm positive he didn't win 9/10 runs with the stealth ship.

#21 Posted by rebgav (1429 posts) -

@fredchuckdave: I think I only saw him play stealth for the no-pause runs and that was obviously a cavalcade of deaths and one win.

I wonder if getting to 50/50 in FTL is as likely as getting to that stage in Isaac? It seems like there are ten times as many shit-hot BoI players as there are FTL players but Isaac seems a much more popular game.

For the OP's consideration - SOTS: The Pit, original version without the dlc, is harder than Isaac or FTL in my opinion. Of the current wave of accessible rogue-likes, The Pit is easily the most difficult that I've played.

#22 Posted by OneKillWonder_ (1830 posts) -

I was actually able to finish Binding of Isaac a few times, so FTL.

#23 Posted by RonGalaxy (3266 posts) -

Binding of Isaac is funner, IMO (logged over 100 hours in that game. Yes, I have a problem). FTL is harder though

#24 Posted by BisonHero (7030 posts) -

FTL is harder, in the sense that you will die more, because parts of it are literally up to chance. When your dodge chance is down in the 10-20% range, if you just get unlucky and take every hit, missiles can really mess you up, which means spending a bunch of early game money on repairs, which means less money to upgrade your ship.

Binding of Isaac, once you get the skills, you can salvage almost any attempt at the game and get at least near the end of The Depths, even if you just keep getting bad items.

#25 Posted by NeoCalypso (221 posts) -

FTL is harder than base Issac for sure. But I think Wrath of the Lamb can go toe to toe with anything in FTL difficulty wise. You have to either be a BoI savant, or get a really good set of items to make it through the Cathedral or The Chest.

#26 Posted by McGhee (6075 posts) -

I thought FTL was too hard but then I started to poke at it and figure its shit out. Then I quickly beat it on Easy then Normal. Now I wish there was a Hard mode.

I guess the challenge comes then from using the less equipped ships, but that idea just hasn't excited me.

#27 Posted by Icicle7x3 (1203 posts) -

Easily FTL

#28 Posted by ArbitraryWater (12105 posts) -

That being said... the last boss in FTL is a bitch and requires such a specific loadout to defeat. I can get to sector 8 consistently on easy and fairly consistently on normal (using a good ship, like the Red Tail), but I cannot for the life of me beat the rebel flagship. And now I'm going to try again, so damn you all. I'll probably play some Isaac while I'm at it.

#29 Posted by dudeglove (8270 posts) -

Binding of Isaac is funner, IMO (logged over 100 hours in that game. Yes, I have a problem). FTL is harder though

You really don't.

#30 Posted by alexaclaire11 (3 posts) -

FTL is harder

#31 Posted by BisonHero (7030 posts) -

@arbitrarywater said:

That being said... the last boss in FTL is a bitch and requires such a specific loadout to defeat. I can get to sector 8 consistently on easy and fairly consistently on normal (using a good ship, like the Red Tail), but I cannot for the life of me beat the rebel flagship. And now I'm going to try again, so damn you all. I'll probably play some Isaac while I'm at it.

I agree about the flagship being a bitch that requires a pretty specific loadout. Allow me to go off on it for a while. It forces you to take each ship (which starts out unique) and basically warp it to a particular playstyle by the time you reach the end of Sector 8. I imagine were Patrick here he would say the last boss was a design decision and he respects that, but fuck that. I really love FTL overall, but designers can be wrong, and I give that design decision exactly zero respect.

The last boss is dumb, and breaks like every rule that all of the other ships have established. For starters, it robs you of Level 3 Sensors because you can't see the power levels of the various rooms, so you don't get a clear sense of how much damage or ion it takes to take out a room, though generally you can assume all non-weapons rooms have the maximum allowable power/HP for that room. By having multiple weapons rooms, it would take you ages to disable them all with missiles or bombs (a viable tactic otherwise), especially since until you kill that crewmember he is constantly repairing it, and a partially damaged flagship weapons room is still capable of firing that weapon. So you are pretty much require to get a decent teleporter squad to take out weapons rooms, or you just need a weapon combo that is broken as fuck where you can just damage race the flagship and win before it kills you (Ion Bomb on shield room, followed by pummeling their shield room until it is dead tends to work). Having a triple-firing missile and ion cannon is also pretty busted, as that's not an obtainable weapon that any other ship you've fought in the game can ever have, and it largely defeats the utility of defense drones, so you're kinda just forced to max out engines to get the best dodge rate possible and hope you luck out. And then the last form is weirdly a joke, because the flagship has lost two of its weapons, and probably most of its crew (as you've probably been pummeling the shield room, killing the dudes repairing it), rendering the teleporter attacks minimal at best (especially compared to the bullshit boarding drone in the last form), so if you've gotten through the first two forms, the third has relatively little offensive power.

I think most players I've ever seen here on GB and in the Steam forums, and basically all reviewers, all think the flagship is the weakest part of the game and should've been redesigned at some point, but the devs disagree, I guess. I was in on the Kickstarter beta (4 months before release), and the flagship now is not noticeably different than from the start of the beta (at best, maybe they adjusted something like its weapon cooldowns, but its basic features and abilities are identical).

#32 Edited by Tennmuerti (8174 posts) -

@everyone

There really isn't that much chance in FTL once you get good at the game. That's really is what being good at FTL is about, being able to minimize the odds against you and if shit does go pear shaped because of bad luck, it's about being able to handle those bad situations. With a bit of time put into it you don't have to rely on luck or good drops at all, they help but that's it, you just start to know how to increase the odds of getting some good stuff to the point where you are almost always guaranteed to have the tools necessary to do the job, consistently. (the unshielded stealth ship is maybe the only exception to the above, where the rng can screw you over with nothing to be done about it)

@arbitrarywater said:

That being said... the last boss in FTL is a bitch and requires such a specific loadout to defeat.

Nah, there are dozens of ways and combinations to beat the flagship :P

#33 Posted by Tennmuerti (8174 posts) -

To me the Binding of Issac was more about dexterity based toughness, which wasn't my cup of tea eventually.

While FTL is all about learning it's systems and how everything works, to then better exploit them.

#34 Posted by Ares42 (2795 posts) -

@bisonhero: All you need to beat the last boss is stealth, enough light power lasers/ions to break the shield and one strong weapon. Using stealth correctly completely breaks the fight.

#35 Posted by BisonHero (7030 posts) -

@ares42 said:

@bisonhero: All you need to beat the last boss is stealth, enough light power lasers/ions to break the shield and one strong weapon. Using stealth correctly completely breaks the fight.

You say it like it's simple, but I consider that basically the epitome of a pretty busted weapon combo.

If you're just stacked with with lasers and ion weapons, then yeah, you fire those all in one volley and you can punch through that flagship shield all day long, because that's OP against any ship in the game. If you had basically any other sort of cool weapon setup using beams, missiles, or bombs, unless that bomb is Ion Bomb, they're suddenly mostly useless against the flagship. If you're using a 3-weapon slot ship, then you literally just need all 3 slots to be like 1 ion + 2 fairly good laser weapons, or just 3 fairly good laser weapons. It's stupid that it invalidates so many fighting styles. You pretty much need 7-8 power worth of lasers/ion just to punch through the flagship's good dodge chance and Level 4 shield.

And yeah, stealth works, though the cooldown timing doesn't always line up with when the missiles/drone strikes come in, and again, it's not much use to survive unless you weapons are busted as shit and you're just thrashing the shield room. It's more reliable to get a teleporter room so that you can always disable the missile room pretty fast, even if your weapon combo is less than ideal and takes a while to kill.

#36 Posted by Tennmuerti (8174 posts) -

@bisonhero:

@ares42 said:

@bisonhero: All you need to beat the last boss is stealth, enough light power lasers/ions to break the shield and one strong weapon. Using stealth correctly completely breaks the fight.

It's doable without stealth too. With full shields and trained crew you can have sufficient dodge and mitigation to tank him, as long as you take down it's secondary weapons. Tho having stealth is by far the safest and easiest option.

Done it without a decent teleporter squad. Done it with just weapons. Done it with a drone heavy build. Some form of combination of ions, or fire, or bombs, or hella lasors. The point is there are many ways.

I love the flagship because it forces the player to up their ante once again, to have a strat, having to push the limits, it is broken (by player rules) and that's perfect imo. You already have a full game of fair fights and as a player already know how to win all the fair fights so having the final boss be a fair fight (in what is essentially a TBS) would have been booooring. An unfair fight at this point is the only thing that can present a challenge.

#37 Posted by Shoey920 (58 posts) -

The correct answer is Spelunky.

#38 Posted by Ares42 (2795 posts) -

@bisonhero: well, that's pretty much what I talked about earlier, the game gets formulaic. Once you know you just need a good amount of lasers and stealth it's not really that hard to get (remembering that if you can't find enough lasers you can replace it with a drone or two). Get scrap, hit every shop and you're pretty much garantueed to get stealth and drones at some point, and then you just need like 2-3 more lasers and you're set. And if you play certain ships you will be so strong from the start that the only things that will ruin your run are the stupidly overpowered encounters.

You could call it a busted weapon combo I guess, but it's the safe and easy way to beat the game. It's boring, but reliable.

#39 Edited by Grillbar (1903 posts) -

wow really? people think that FTL is harder then binding of issac. im not saying FTL ise not hard, but atleast i have completed that a few times, and gotten to the final boss a ton of times, but with binding i really dont get far and have not even gotten to the final boss yet

#40 Posted by AlexW00d (6432 posts) -

Isaac is harder on a skill level, but FLT is harder on a silly arbitrary dice roll kind of difficulty.

#41 Posted by EarlessShrimp (1668 posts) -

FTL is much harder. Binding of Isaac does rely on good random drops, but there are much fewer things that could spoil your journey randomly than a game of FTL.