The games themselves are focused on hand-eye coordination and commands. When the game commands a player to do an action on the game, the player has to obey. If successful, a sound effect plays and the player earns a point. If unsuccessful, the game ends.
The first game consisted of three commands: a purple button (Bop It), a yellow crank (Twist It), and a blue knob (Pull It). Beginning with Extreme, two more staple commands would be added: a red (1998-2006)/orange (2010) wheel (Spin It) and a green lever (Flick It).
The games provide examples of:
- Audio Game
- Big "WHY?!": One of the comments from Maker is this.
- Big Win Sirens: The original game and Extreme do this whenever you win.
- Checkpoint: In Blast, the game provides these for every 100 points. However, you lose all of them if you fail.
- When choosing to start from a specific level in Download, the score starts from where the previous level left off.
- Difficulty Levels: The 2008 version introduces this trope to the series by having three of these, respectively called Novice, Expert, and Master.
- Early Installment Weirdness: The 1996 version had sound effects to represent the modes rather than The Announcer reading the names of the modes.
- It also only had a solo game for Vox Bop called Solo Bop. Extreme renamed this to Vox Bop Solo and added a solo game for Beat Bop.
- Have a Nice Death: Beginning with Extreme, various sarcastic and witty comments play whenever the player loses.
- Download's voice recording feature can take this to extreme levels, given that you can record whatever you want it to say.
- Beginning with the 2016 version (dubbed Refresh by most fans), the game can call you out for not doing a specific command. An example from Maker:Announcer: The game is literally called Bop It!
- If you lose with enough points in Extreme, a short melody will play proceeded by Pull It noises resembling Big Win Sirens.
- Let Us Never Speak of This Again: This comment from Beats:
- Announcer: Let's pretend that didn't happen.
- Except that it reports the score and ends the game.
- Nintendo Hard: Extreme is one of the fastest games in the series, with the 1996 version being a runner up.
- Levels 13-15 in Download also only feature the fast speed while combining everything from the previous levels into one.
- Tetris can become this as you progress further in the game.
- NOT!: One of the comments in Extreme does this.Announcer: Hey, you win...NOT!
- Plug 'n' Play Technology: Download revolves around USB to download beats, sounds, and voices.
- Press X to Not Die: This is the primary focus, but the Light Bop feature on Blast and Download can disguise Press X to Die as this if the command and light don't match.
- Bounce, Smash, and Tetris are focused on entirely different game tactics.
- Two were made in 1999 called Zing It (based off a yo-yo) and Top It (based off a kendama), and two more were made in 2002 called Groove It and NuJam Guitar.
- That's Gotta Hurt: Download has this as a losing comment.
- We Cannot Go On Without You: Miss even one command and the game is over.