DonutCat is a reflex based action title that builds on the concept of games like Timberman. A fat cat needs to chase a donut with legs running up a vertical pole that originates out of the mouth of a giant fish at the bottom. It is an endless runner as the player has no control over speed, the cat runs by itself. The only interaction is a tap, anywhere on the screen, to move from the left side of the pole to the right side and vice versa. This is done to avoid branches. If a branch is hit, the game is over right away and the fish appears to eat the cat.
Along the way coins can be collected and with a certain number of coins it is possible to continue from the point where the cat died. Alternatively an ad can be watched. The game cannot be completed, the goal is to get a high score. Each coin provides ten points and after a while flowers are introduced. They provide 500 points, but temporarily trigger a dizzy mode where the pole starts to tip over. There are other items to collect such as pieces of fruit and hamburger for more points.