Mario & Sonic at the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games is mostly composed of sports-based minigames. The game is set to match with the real-world Olympic Games in 2014, with some events reflecting the real-world events. There are also events that have their own spin, called Dream Events.
The gameplay of Mario and Sonic at the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games revolves around the game's minigames. Many of the minigames feature four characters from the cast facing off in some type of sport, with the goal typically being to beat the opponents to the end of the race or score the most points by performing well.
Both the Wii U GamePad and the Wii Remote and Nunchuk are used in-game, depending on the event. The events may use any combination of motion-controlled movements and timed button presses. Each character has stats based on their Power, Speed, Skill and Acceleration. The balance of the stats may give them a slight edge in the competition.
Single Matches are the default mode of all of the Sonic & Mario games. This mode features all of the games Olympic Event and Dream Event minigames. Up to four players can cooperate or compete in any of these minigames with each other or the CPU. This mode records records for the best scores.
Medley Mania is similar to Single Match in that it has up to four players competing or cooperating in any of the game's Olympic Events or Dream Events. However, this mode has the events grouped into specific themed medleys made up four events, with the winner being the player who has the most points after all four events. The medleys include Sonic Stage Medley, Mario Stage Medley, Jumping Medley, Teamwork Medley, Ice Medley, Lock-On Medley, Speed Medley, and Racing Medley. Players can also make their own custom medleys.
Worldwide Vs is a new mode, and serves as the online multiplayer mode. This allows players to compete in various Olympic Events with people throughout the world. Points gained from these events go toward their country's rank in a global ranking.
Legends Showdown is a mode new to the Mario & Sonic series. This serves as the game's single-player mode. All 20 playable characters are used in this mode. It has players go through specific stages, events, and boss fights. The story mode is broken into five sections, each of which has four characters facing off against ghost versions of themselves in four standard events and one boss event.
Action & Answer Tour
The Action & Answer Tour is a new mode in the Mario & Sonic series. This mode features Olympic Event minigames combined with event-specific quiz questions. The questions will come up during regular gameplay, and can alter how the player is doing depending on whether or not they get the answer right.
As with previous Mario & Sonic titles, the game features a variety of unlockable costumes and music. Once unlocked, costumes can be worn by any of the Miis and will alter that Mii's stats to fit the costume. The costumes match the appearance of many playable and non-playable characters.
Unlockable music can alter the game's default soundtrack. This music is gathered from various games in both the Mario and Sonic series. Rather than buying the collectibles, as in previous games, both costumes and music are now unlocked by completing certain in-game objectives.