Mutropolis is a point-and-click adventure game set in the far future. In the year 5000 no one lives on Earth anymore and the survivors have long fled to Mars. The planet is now only visited by archaeologists who dig up relics and attempt to uncover the lives and objects of the period that is described as pre-cataclysmic, before the people left the planet. The game's protagonist Henry Dijon is a member of such a team, led by Professor Totel who is most interested in locating the mythical city Mutropolis. During a breakthrough discovery Totel is kidnapped and the team returns to Mars to search his office for clues which they hope will lead to the professor's location or Mutropolis on Earth.
The game is divided over several chapters with over 50 hand-drawn screens. Henry can be moved around freely and the mouse cursor is used to interact with the environment. There is only one action and depending on the context he will examine an item, start a conversation of interact with the environment. Next to the conversations there are many puzzles to solve and these are often item based. Several items can be collected and they can also be combined in the inventory. Some parts of the game have several goals and then Henry can choose which one to pursue and then follow a lead for another mission when stuck, but the game itself is eventually entirely linear. There are also several puzzles that require more deduction and deciphering rather than straightforward item combinations.
There is no fail state. All characters are fully voiced. A separate key is used to highlight all hotspots in the environment.