Super Princess Peach plays similarly to traditional platformers. There are eight worlds, each of which contain six levels and a boss battle which leads the player to the next world. Three captive Toads are hidden throughout each level, with each boss battle holding a single Toad contained in a bubble. In order to play the final boss battle, the player must rescue all of the Toads. After the game is completed, the player can go through the levels again to pick up more unlockable items. Beating a boss will unlock three new levels for the next world. There are a total of 24 extra levels to unlock. On the upper left hand side of the screen, there are two bars: heart gauge (maximum of five hearts) and emotion meter. Whenever Peach falls down a hole, an ocean of lava or gets hit by an enemy, she loses half a heart and respawns at the last checkpoint. When all hearts are gone, she starts over at the beginning of the level. In addition, the game features a shop where players can buy items. Using coins as currency the player can buy incremental upgrades to expand the heart gauge or the emotion meter, as well as Perry's abilities. Peach has infinite lives, so the player can continue as much as they please. By finishing the game and completing all bonuses, the player can buy a drink named "Endless Vibe". It allows Peach to use her vibes without having the vibe meter decreasing, meaning that the player can use her powers as long as they please. The game's bonuses include a glossary, puzzles, mini games, a music room, and replays of Perry's dreams. There are three mini games within the game and the levels are unlocked as the player finds more mini game pieces in the levels. All of the mini games has the player control Toad in a variety of activities (such as a platforming mode).
The emotion meter corresponds to the four vibe powers she has. The emotions at Vibe Island affect everybody, even enemies, while Peach can change hers at will. The four emotions are joy, gloom, rage, and calm. When the player taps on each mood it will activate a different ability which helps solve puzzles and defeat enemies. Each use will drain the player's vibe meter. The bar can be restored by capturing blue turquoise jewels or absorbing enemies using Perry the parasol.
Perry is a talking umbrella and Peach's ally in this game. Unlike Mario, jumping on enemies does not defeat them; Peach must use Perry to hit them. The player can press "B" to immediately sweep them aside or "X" to put them on top of the umbrella. Once an enemy is on top of the umbrella, the player may press "X" again to put the enemy down, "B" to throw the enemy, or down on the D-pad to absorb the enemy, which refills part of the emotion meter. As the game progresses, Perry gains new abilities. The "Subrella" allows Peach to travel underwater. The "Slidebrella" turns Perry upside down and uses his handle like a hook. It is used in areas with a maze of high-flying wires. The "Bowlbrella" puts Peach in the umbrella and allows her to navigate through the water's surface. The three additional abilities that can be bought with coins are "Floatbrella", which allows Peach to stay afloat for a few seconds, "Poundbrella", which shakes the ground and stuns any enemies nearby, and "Chargebrella", which creates a small charge that will stun the closest enemy.