The gameplay is a mascot kart racer similar to the Mario Kart and Sonic and SEGA series. Racers try to get first place on a variety of tracks with obstacles and items to help or hinder. Some tracks will have unique aspects to their series such as F-Zeroboosters, where the boost can be activated as a item. In the overworld, however, it is much more like Diddy Kong Racing. Characters will work together to save N-Isle from the evil Dark Mist.
In total there are 25 playable characters.
- Princess Peach
- Donkey Kong
- Diddy Kong
- Meta Knight
- Samus Aran
- Fox McCloud
- Captain Falcon
- Tom Nook
- Mr. Game & Watch
- Super Mushroom - Gives the player a temporary speed boost.
- Fire Flower - Allows the player to toss fire balls at enemies for a while.
- Smart Bomb - Shot behind or in front of the player and blows up anyone it hits.
- Poké Ball - Capture the player in front of you, making them unable to move for a few seconds.
- Deku Nut - Thrown forward and will make anyone in its blast radius unable to see for a few seconds.
- Smash Ball - Unleashes the players special move.
- DK Barrel Cannon - Place a cannon down on the track to catapult a player straight ahead.
- Bullet Bill - Ala to it's appearance in the Mario Kart series.
- KO Glove - A Wii Sports boxing glove that can rebound of walls.
- Warp Star - For players in the bottom two places to get warped to 4th or 5th.
- Arwing - An arwing will make the user fly for a short time before barrel rolling onto a player in 1st.
- Blue Falcon - For the bottom two players, they speed up constantly for a short time.
- Bowling Ball - A heavy bowling ball can be thrown, causing players to spin out.
A simple track took place in Toad Town. Players also race through Princess Peach's Castle across a lake. Goombas and pipes are found as hazards on the ground.
A race around Skyloft in the air the entire race. Floating rocks, birds and bombs are hazards along with a giant tornado. Racers can go through a cave under Skyloft as a shortcut. There are giant portals which warps the racers to Skyloft in the bad future, and through a long desert. You can be caught quickly if you fall off.
A race in Whispy's forest. Players race around Whispy Woods. They also race on a river where they land on a floating island after getting off the waterfall. Waddle Dees are hazards on the ground, while blippers and squishies are hazards in the water.
A race through the Brinstar planet. Players race through the giant brain, along with going into a giant Ridley only to warp to Norfair. Racers drive around a big asteroid going through another portal to be warped back to Brinstar exiting out of a giant maggot's mouth. Mother Brain's minions and fireball are known to be hazards