Nostalgia glasses are weird. There is a fine line between difficult and terribly designed. I guess the difference would be if the difficult aspects of a game like JetMoto still felt rewarding, and not like you were fighting the game itself. Like, a lot of people love old retro games because they were hard, but from a modern perspective, they actually were crappily made. I love playing Donkey Kong, for example, but a good portion of it is based on luck as I have often just been trapped by obstacles with no chance of escaping.
I guess when discussing difficulty, video games need to be like chess. It shouldn’t be hard to learn the rules and mechanics and start playing, but it should be tough to master.