The controls in Jump Superstars are quite simple, and may resemble a platform game more than a fighting game. Yet there is still a certain complexity to the gameplay. Even though all battle characters have the same controls, with one specific button to use special attacks, each character will have different types of attacks for different button presses. For some characters, + will be an uppercut, for others it could be a jumping attack, and for yet some others it may not even be an attack, but something else like charging the special bar or getting stronger.
On the upper left of the battle screen, which is the upper screen, is the health bar. When this bar is depleted, the character is KOed, and will either switch to another character, or, if all characters in the deck are KOed, will be KOed a while before revived.
Under the health bar is the specials bar. Next to this bar is a number, which is the number of specials you have left. This number is depleted every time you use a special attack, or when you use a support or help koma in your deck. The number of specials can be refilled by attacking, getting hit, or picking up coins or Jump Pirate items, or by using some komas or special attacks.