The player's actions are most effective when moving the character set to the beat of the current song and are impaired when they miss a beat, so it is necessary to learn the rhythmic patterns that the various creatures follow. Failure to match the beat does not directly harm the character in most situations, but does reset the scoring multiplier and may cause the character to be harmed by a nearby monster if he/she is in their attack path. The first three levels of each zone require the player to find the exit and defeat a mini-boss to unlock it; the fourth level is a larger boss character that must be defeated to progress further. The player initially has access to the main character, Cadence, but new characters with different modes of play also become available as the player completes certain goals: for example, the monk character receives one free item in each shop, but immediately dies if he touches gold. The songs in the game's soundtracks are ordered in ascending tempo across zones and levels, making deeper levels more challenging than earlier ones. In the main game, the player controls Cadence, the daughter of a famed treasure hunter that has gone missing.
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