The map is a near identical recreation of the Hyrule from A Link to the Past, for better or worse. It's fun to come back to a familiar world with new twists added to it, but at the same time there's less sense of discovery.
You get to rent and purchase pretty much all the big items you would normally get through the course of a normal Zelda game (hookshot, bow & arrow, etc.) at the beginning of the game AND IT IS AMAZING.
Instead of having a magic meter and item collecting (set number of bombs, arrows, etc.), you have one single general meter for magic and items that automatically refills AND IT IS AMAZING.
A mother and father who seem very worried about the whereabouts of their young child don't seem to be too concerned when you tell them that their child is a magic sage who is now in a dimension separate from our own to help destroy an ancient evil, which is weird.
There's a rapping shop owner.
REPEAT: THERE'S A RAPPING SHOP OWNER.
The game isn't super challenging (a lot of the boss fights are way too easy), but it refreshingly doesn't hold your hand and allows you to figure stuff out for yourself and explore the secrets the world has to offer.
Right when Link has a shot at having a home with a single twin bed that he doesn't have to share with his weird uncle, a rabbit-hatted person/thing starts living with you and literally turns your home into his own store.
RAPPING. SHOP. OWNER.
The villain who sets the plot into motion looks a lot like a lady-version of Ganondorf. FANFIC COMMUNITY, TIME TO REV YOUR ENGINE.
Oh goddammit, the copy of Hyrule Historia I bought doesn't have this in it. IT'S LITERALLY WORTHLESS NOW.
Honestly, the transfer of the 2D world/aesthetics from Link to the Past to the third dimension is kinda ugly. Plus, you can rarely see Link's face - he's mostly just a lock of hair and a green hat except for the cutscenes.
It handles like a dream, with fluidity of motion and wonderfully tight controls all around. None of the wonky Z-targeting or camera issues or anything from the more traditional 3-D Zeldas.
The quantity of rapping shop owners (1) is significantly higher than that found in any previous Zelda game.