Hammer Heads Deluxe is a casual arcade game based on the classic Whack-a-Mole concept. The mouse controls a hammer used to thwack garden gnomes popping up from holes in the ground, requiring quick reflexes and fast eye-hand coordination. The game features different environments, such a garden, the beach, the desert... If a gnome is ignored, it will pop again and if it is missed the player loses a life, represented as a bar of hearts at the top of the screen. While playing, there are additional hearts to be collected, as well as gold treasure chests, cupids and strawberries.
Money can be used to upgrade the hammer's speed or power in the shop (only available when you whack a shop gnome) or to buy additional lives. There are various achievements, stored in a trophy screen. These are awarded as milestones when 1,000 gnomes are hit or when a certain number of points has been scored. For extra points, perfect accuracy or lightning-fast reflexes are needed to score chains of bashed gnomes.
The different types of gnomes provide an additional challenge. Some need to be hit multiple times, or only at specific moments (e.g. when they put a bucket on their head, or remove their helmet). Every five levels, the player acquires a camera to take a snapshot and save the game.
The full version of the game removes the time restriction, allows the player to progress past the seventh level, has 21 trophies up for grabs, enables the shop, and adds 2 additional modes. After finishing 10 levels in the Classic Bash mode, the Marathon Bash is unlocked, where you battle an endless amount of gnomes. When you beat the king in the Classic Bash mode, the Tough Cookie mode is unlocked.