Like many computer games, the player can use both the arrow keys or 'WASD' to navigate through the rooms. However, holding down a movement key while going through a door will not result in the player's continued motion; the player will simply stop, and must hold down the key once again to continue moving.
Holding the shift key allows the player to run until their stamina bar is depleted, or they release shift. At first, this function is just used to get through rooms faster, but later in the game, it becomes necessary to escape the house's many deadly enemies.
In addition to the sprint button, a technique known as "strafing" is present. Instead of going in a straight path, the player holds down the up/down and right/left keys simultaneously.
From room 750, sprinting is replaced with the dysfunctional and cheap "Infinite Stamina", considered to be a "gift" by Spooky, which removes the sprint function entirely. However, sprinting will return after passing 15 rooms.
Currently, the player can use the Spacebar or E key to interact with their surroundings, like viewing notes, opening doors/vents, picking up items or hiding.
Pressing the E key on one of the purple crosses found throughout the game will allow the player to save.
Saving is accomplished upon each 50 increment rooms. However, from Room 300, each saving point is separated by 100 rooms.
Saving is also possible at rooms 250, 500 and 750, where there will be a plate showing the password for the respective milestone room.
In Karamari Hospital DLC, saving is possible by using the water fountain in the waiting room, screen will briefly flash red, and the game will be saved.
In Endless Mode, saving is possible only in elevator, at first it will appear after 50 rooms, from Room 300 elevators are separated by 100 rooms, and from room 1000 by 200 rooms.
There are three options to leave the game:
- [Esc] + Exit
- Alt + F4
- Main Menu
Pressing F9 will have the game take a screenshot, this is a very useful mechanic for getting images of the game.
The screenshots will be saved in the game files.
On Steam version, pressing F12 also takes a screenshot.
In the options menu, it is possible to skip directly to room 250, 500, or 750 if the player knows the respective password.
The passwords show up above the saving cross in their respective rooms.
- Room 250: 'PUMPKIN'
- Room 500: 'CHEESE'
- Room 750: 'CAKE'
Pressing 'BackSpace' pauses the game; Also works with 'ESC'.
Main article: Axe
The Axe is the only weapon in the base game. The axe is swung by pressing the left mouse button. It's main usage is to kill Violent deers, open blocked doors (Including the Exit doors) and finally kill Specimen 9's boss form.
When out of stamina, swinging speed does not decrease, allowing for "spamming" of the attack button at this time.
Also, it will allow the player to cut down the Specimen 1 popups and knock back Specimen 2. Specimen 3 will be stunned for 1-2 seconds when being hit, and will shortly start chasing again afterwards. The axe will cause Specimen 6 to fall to the ground and become harmless, but it will go back to normal when the player enters the next room. It is highly recommended to avoid hitting Specimen 10 with the axe, as it will transform into its much faster 2nd form. Hitting Specimen 11 with the axe simply makes him disappear from the room. It will resume the chase once the player proceeds to the next room.
Sword works identically to axe, but it also can kill most of the enemies present in the DLC. Like the axe, using it will affect the game's ending.
- Skipping option passwords are all food.
- The Passwords together spell out Pumpkin Cheesecake, which is Kira's favourite October dessert.
- Every time the player presses the shift key (Sprint), a small amout of player's stamina gets lost even if the player won't move, quicly pressing shift player can make stamina bar completely empty without moving or using weapon.
- If the player loaded saved game, he/she can use the purple cross to save the game again in the same place.
- At the beggining of Karamari Hospital there's a purple save cross in the elevator, however it cannot be used.