My 1st impressions after beating Legend of Zelda. The actual ending to LoZ is your imagination.
I know, I'm complaining a lot about it, like "ya, games back then were hard", but in the end I did find Zelda to be quite an enjoyable game. In fact, I would say that it gets better with each play through. I mean, despite my hang ups with my first playthrough I know I can go back to this game and play it differently than I did last time, and that excites me. I can't exactly say that about other Zeldas, no matter what, I still have to beat all the dungeons as a kid first before I become an adult in Ocarina of Time, can't exactly go to turtle rock right away in Link to the Past, nor can I get anywhere during the 2nd half without my horse in Majora's Mask. I mean when was the last time you could say you beat the 3rd level before you beat the 1st? Sure, Mega Man gives you that kind of option, in a way, but it's not inside a full blown world. This type of exploring is really fun, and needs to be a little more present in video games. I mean, everyone's first playthrough of Zelda may not be exactly the same as others. No one person gets the exact same experience. As well, when you are actually done with this game you can change your routes, were you go, what you do, etc. You can effectively make speed runs in any way you want, make challenges like the no sword run. The actual end to Zelda is just your imagination on how to play it, and I think that's what makes it such a great game.
Conclusion: Legend of Zelda is not for the light hearted, it can sometimes be unfair, frustrating, and confusing. But Legend of Zelda is a classic for a reason, and if you give the time of day to play it, it will give you something fun and unique to play over and over again