Here is a quick one-take recording I did demonstrating five different entrance points to the Chris Houlihan Room in The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past.
This "top secret room" (as it is named in other releases) was named the "Chris Houlihan Room" in English language copies of the game as the prize awarded to a Mr. Chris Houlihan, winner of the WarMECH Challenge Competition described in Nintendo Power Magazine Volume 16 (Sept./Oct. 1990) at p.13. The competition involved finding the enemy named "WarMECH" in Final Fantasy I.
There has been much fan speculation as to the precise nature of the room, and there is an enormous amount of misinformation about it present online. To address the three most glaring errors briefly:
1)There is not one INTENDED way to get into the room. It is a failsafe room that the player is dumped into if the game glitches after the player falls into a hole. There are several places where the glitch can occur. More information on the subject can be provided on request.
2)Speed is NOT a critical factor in arriving at the Chris Houlihan Room. The vast majority of guides suggest that the player must run at top speed and that if he/she is hit by an enemy or bumps a wall then the trick will not work. This is incorrect. although the Pegasus Boots are required for the trick and although this video shows the sprite moving at top speed (usually) this is merely done to cut down recording length. It is possible to stand next to the hole leading to the room for minutes on end and still arrive in the room. The speed rumor is nothing more than a scapegoat that can be blamed when the more difficult running techniques fail to trigger the glitch.
3)Exiting the room and returning again without picking up any rupees does NOT result in some even bigger prize. It is true that failing to picking up even one rupee the first time will allow the rupees to remain in subsequent visits, but there is no ultimate prize. As this one-take recording demonstrates, even after five return trips there is still no change.
There are two distinct glitches that allow the entries to the room made in this video, five different methods, and at least thirteen distinct techniques for arriving in the room. (Or as many as sixteen if you count different major routes). More information on the subject can be provided upon request. In this video can be seen:
16. Hollow Tree (Glitch #2, Glitch Point - Hollow Tree, Technique - Bomb, Entrance Point - Hollow Tree)
14. Fairy Cave Bounce-Push (Glitch #1, Glitch Point - Northern, Technique - Bounce Push, Entrance Point - Fairy Cave)
15. Cemetery (Glitch #2, Glitch Point - Cemetery, Technique - Bomb, Entrance Point - Cemetery Grave)
5. Western Castle Garden Injury-Push (Glitch #1, Glitch Point - Western, Technique - Injury Push, Entrance Point - Castle Garden)
3. Pyramid of Power Bounce-Push (Glitch #1, Glitch Point - Dark, Technique - Bounce Push, Entrance Point - Pyramid of Power)
The remaining 8-11 numbered and named techniques will be made available in my other Chris Houlihan Room videos or can be made available upon request.
Lastly, I apologize for the relatively poor quality of the video. It was recorded at 30 fps rather than the full 60, so at times Link will disappear (as if he were wearing the Magic Cape). This is an artifact of the recording only.
This video was created using an emulated version of the SNSP-ZL-UKV cartridge on the SNES9Xv1.52 emulator. Video format conversion was made possible by iSkysoft Video Converter v1.9.6. This video is presented under a claim of fair use as a non-profit educational video. All copyrights and trademarks to material related to the Zelda franchise are retained by Nintendo.