Up to 10 battlechips must be equipped on a triangular deck pattern. During battles, chip sequences are chosen at random and played automatically. The player must learn how offensive and defensive skills play off each other to maximize their winning chances.
This game features the following tropes:
- Anti-Frustration Features: Before every netbattle your navi can tell you the odds of winning with the chips you have equipped. Also, you can retry battles as much as you need and even fast-foward them!
- Breakable Weapons: Every chip has HP and various attacks can damage one or more of the opponent's current chip sequence.
- Character Focus: At the start of every character's game and upon unlocking each new level of tournament, the player character makes some progress through their own personal character arc, giving several cast members Character Development they were sorely lacking in the main series.
- Death Is a Slap on the Wrist: You can not only continue after any loss, but you can also restart fights any time things start going sour. If, however, your chances are too poor, leaving the tournament will require you to start from the beginning on re-entry.
- Game Plays Itself: Arguably the ultimate example, as everything beyond setting up your deck is automated. The only game that even comes close to it in how much it automates itself is Tokyo Tattoo Girls.
- Gender Flip: Ring.EXE is the female counterpart to the robot master from the Mega Man (Classic) series.
- Jack-of-All-Stats: MegaMan.EXE is the most balanced of the starting characters.
- Limit Break: The only action either player can perform is to interrupt the opponent with two single-use chips, though it has a chance of success determined by a gauge that fills as the battle goes on. In Rockman.EXE N1 Battle, however, this isn't possible.
- Luck-Based Mission:
- The game is heavily driven by randomness. It is very telling that it allows you to retry battles over and over until something works.
- Most battlechips in the game must be obtained at random via booster packs at Higsby's shop.
- Marathon Level: The extra tournament lasts for 100 battles and has a souped-up Bass waiting at the end.
- Oddball in the Series: Features completely different mechanics than the rest of the Battle Network series.
- Player Character: 6 characters including newcomers Ring and TurboMan are available in the beginning, but you can actually obtain navi chips that swap them for anyone else in the cast. In Rockman.EXE N1 Battle, however, only Lan and MegaMan's story is available.
- Powerful, but Inaccurate: Chips with high damage are often inaccurate, especially those that can destroy the opponent's deck.
- Save-Game Limits: The game features 6 playable characters with unique stories, but you only get 2 save slots.
- Tournament Arc: The entire game is made up of those.
- Unwinnable by Mistake: You must keep a balanced chip folder that can deal with pretty much anything when you tackle the latter tournaments, or else...