Based on the sport of beach volleyball, the game revolves around two-on-two matches where a volleyball is hit back and forth over a net until one side allows the ball to touch the ground. Similar to Sega's "Virtua" sports games, most of the gameplay in Beach Spikers is based around the concept of "charging" the strength of your moves, judged by how long the button is held prior to release at the point of which the move is executed. There is a button for setting (passing) and a button for rallying (sending the ball over the net) which, combined with how long the button is held to determine strength, is the basis for the way the entire game is played. There are two modes to choose from: Arcade Mode and World Tour mode. Arcade mode is a basic progression through a series of AI opponents, and in the multiplayer portion of Arcade Mode, it's head-to-head matches for up to four human players. In World Tour mode, you take a user-created team through a tournament, earning points as you go that allow you to increase the stats of your players and also unlock special teams and players, including one based on the character Ulala from Sega's Space Channel 5 series.