Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker builds upon the Captain Toad levels first introduced in Super Mario 3D World. In the game, players control Captain Toad, who must safely navigate across various levels in order to reach a star at the end of each. Captain Toad is unable to jump, but is able to pull out roots, which reveal either coins or turnips that can be thrown at enemies, as well as sprint in a dash. Players can manipulate the camera to view around the level, which can reveal hidden areas containing bonus gems. The game makes use of the Wii U GamePad's features, as the player can touch the screen to manipulate platforms, as well as use gyroscopic controls to aim turnips whilst riding mine carts.