In Trophy Rush, the player selects any character they wish, then selects how long they wish to play the game. The minimum length of time is 30 seconds, though it can be increased by one second for every six Coins the player adds to the cost, with the maximum possible play time being 150 seconds.
In the actual game, the player is tasked with destroying as many crates that fall onto the small platform they are standing on as possible; a line high above the platform indicates how high the crates are allowed to pile up, and if this line is breached for five seconds (with a breach being a continuous stack of crates that touches the platform and the line), then the platform disappears, forcing the player to be KO'd , as the platform doesn't reappear until the player falls (the timer resets after a short delay). In addition to this danger, bombs with a five-second fuse can fall onto the stage, certain boxes will shoot fire from one side if not destroyed within 3.5 seconds, and if the player stays in one place for too long a warning will appear followed by a ball of lightning dropping from the sky. Getting KO'd for any reason causes a deduction of fifteen seconds of play time, ten or five seconds on subsequent KO's.
While destroying boxes, the player is able to build up a "chain", which is broken if they fail to destroy any boxes in a small period of time; the higher the chain, the more points are awarded for each box destroyed. Scoring points fills up a meter in the top left of the screen; when the meter is full it triggers a Fever Rush, where specialised blocks holding coins, trophies, and occasionally custom parts constantly fall onto the stage for seven seconds.
In the Wii U version only, Trophy Rush allows character customization and can be played co-operatively with two players. When playing co-op, more rewards can be obtained, but more tough blocks and balls of electricity will appear and the window of time to continue a chain is shorter.
The Trophy Rush stage is somewhat different between the two versions of SSB4, but each version uses a background similar to the respective version's Battlefield. The main platform of the Wii U stage resembles that of Battlefield as well.
Each type of block has a score value associated with it.
The Chain Bonus is equal to the current chain multiplied by 10, to a maximum of 1500 points. Therefore, any chain of 150 or greater will award the maximum 1500 point bonus.
A block hit by an attack from the fighter will reward the value of the block, plus the Chain Bonus. The Chain Bonus is increased from hitting the block, then rewarded. No Chain Bonus is applied unless the Chain is 2 or greater.
A block hit by an electrical ball or directional explosive will reward half of the value of the block, with no Chain Bonus.