The players starts in the middle of a battlefield with trophies standing on images of the stages available in the game; there are up to 7 players on a stage image. They choose what battle they will go and then fight against the opponents; they will advance after each victory. It lasts seven rounds (Although it may feel short, the fact that an 8 player match can happen compensates this) and is skill based, but the player must survive long enough to KO every opponent in the round, and depending on the intensity, a roulette would determine the reward upon victory prior to the round. The first 5 rounds may alternate between Free-For-All battles and Team Smash Battles. To clarify: Rounds 1-3 contain characters with their default palettes and one rival that gets stronger in each round, but contain better rewards upon victory, and Rounds 4 and 5 contain characters in their alternates and with Custom Moves.
Round 6 pits the player against the Fighting Mii Team (20 opponents), and Round 7 pits the player against Master Hand (appears in all intensities, blue and black paths). When playing at intensity 3.0 and higher, a black path branches out, in which Crazy Hand will also join in on the fight. When playing at 5.1 and higher, Master Core will appear, and have a specific amount of forms to defeat (2 in 5.1-5.9, 3 in 6.0-7.4, 4 in 7.5-7.9, and 5 8.0 and above, excluding the core itself).
Sometimes, at certain points, prior to rounds 6 and 7, an intruder will unexpectedly join the fight, as the opponent will either be giant or metallic. Team battles may also occur, and in the event that they do, then the players can pick one or more defeated opponents to be their teammates to fight alongside them. This mode can be played solo or in a group (two player Co-Op), and with two players, every round in this mode is a team battle (save for the occasional intruder match, and rounds 6 and 7).
After defeating either Master Hand or the Master Core and getting to the puzzle revealing section, you have to hit the credit boxes near an empty space to reveal said part. You will gain gold equal to the closest full percentage (so a 80.62% will give 80 gold).