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Castlevania: Hugh Baldwin Hack

Hack of Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow


This update contains sprite/dialogue edits, as well as item/enemy/stat updates also.

This is a hack for Aria of Sorrow featuring the cast of Circle of the Moon. It acts as a sequel to Circle of the Moon where Hugh pursues the power he had when he was under Dracula’s control. Carmilla, Nathan, and Morris make a return as well. Hugh uses his sword as his default weapon as well as eventually gaining sub weapons and other magical abilities. The gameplay remains unchanged, but certain enemies have been replaced, items stats and locations have been edited within the castle for a fresh feel. Music tracks have been changed also.

Be sure to get all of the endings. And just a hint: The three souls for the true ending have been replaced with something else. Special thanks to Caminopreacher for the new dialogue and item/enemy editing as well as Darkprincealucard for sprite work.

ROM / ISO Information:

  • Unmodded:
  • No-Intro Entry: Castlevania - Aria of Sorrow (USA)
  • External Header: No
  • ROM Size: 6.31MB
  • CRC32: 03B97719
  • MD5: 4DDE5C64AD0997E7BB0A74D3A0C4BFD0
  • SHA-1: 0D2507B8B80D469C95EEC17A429FBBBAB053FCB9
  • -
  • Modded:
  • No-Intro Entry: Castlevania - Aria of Sorrow (USA) [Aria of Sorrow Spoof]
  • External Header: No
  • ROM Size: 6.31MB
  • CRC32: 23634EA1
  • MD5: 0184EE70E94DD360239851F616A9007A
  • SHA-1: D4BBCEE204372A1C11D7B8233C14FC5087C9869C




ContributorType of contributionListed credit
Faz rank 4Hacking

User Review Information

A Delightfully Dark Story

Reviewed By: jm102887 on 18 Sep 2021

Found this on a whim while trying to look up something else, but man am I glad I did. This is an interesting hack to be sure, one that I dove into all of yesterday and finished in a night.

STORY: So in this story, we’re playing as Hugh Baldwin of CotM (obviously, lol), but this story tries to be a sequel of sorts to CotM. After the events of that game, Hugh, ever seeking to be stronger than Nathan, now is on a personal mission to acquire the power of the darkness that he was so close to in the first venture. This is honestly the biggest draw of this hack and a lot of the reason that I played so much of it in one sitting. I just had to know what was going to happen with each cutscene! There actually is a good story here, one with several twists that I thought interesting for sure.

GAMEPLAY: You wouldn’t think that doing character palette swaps and dialogue reworking would warrant a look at the gameplay, but delightfully enough, the author actually changed up gameplay some. This is primarily still played like Aria of course, but the biggest change is the fact that Hugh’s attack is a slash in an arc in front of him mostly akin to the “Swinging” class of weapons Soma uses in the base game. This arc doesn’t have the reach of the longswords in the base game, so there’s a bit more involved in actually fighting than jump in and start hacking away. There’s also a MUCH more significant stretch of time before the “shop” (you’ll see when you get to that point) becomes available, so healing items, found in vast quantities where there used to be equipment all over the place originally, isn’t as readily replenished before the endgame. Hugh can take a LOT of damage quickly as a result, and the player will have to be more careful than normal.

FUN: YES! 100% yes. The change in story, the slightly altered combat, everything added up to a fun experience that kept me going well past time for me to stop cause I just had to know what was going to come up next. The fact that I wasn’t readily tripping over new equipment all the time made the slightly fewer amounts of upgrades feel more exciting. The story, a bit silly in some cases, was fairly compelling and had me wanting to know what exactly was going to happen in the next cutscene. If that isn’t a good measure of fun, then I dunno what is!

MY RATING: 9.5/10 Yeah, I’m singing this hack’s praises and maybe going a little overboard, but this is MY review! Lol there ARE issues. Hugh’s run animation, as the other reviewer put it, is a little sloppy, and the “Graham” boss fight looks like it can be slightly bugged (I only noticed it in the Boss Rush and even then only half the time) where the hands and halo fail to appear, leading to you defeating the boss with no resistance whatsoever. Endgame is also a slight change in that it grows exceptionally easy with the right setup, though this isn’t necessarily a bad thing given the storyline. In the end, this is a great time and one I highly recommend giving a try.

Also, I loved the Normal Ending where you fail to prepare properly for the “Graham” boss fight. That one was delightfully silly with how it ended and I LOVED it :P

Version 1.1 Recommended - Yes

User Reviews
A Delightfully Dark Storyjm10288718 Sep 20211.1Yes
CotM Fans REJOICE!StarWyvern16 Dec 20191.1Yes