Soul Fjord is a hack-and-slash roguelike dungeon crawler that combines 13th Century Norse mythology as a setting with 1970s funk. The protagonist is Magnus Jones sporting an afro who has been denied access to Valhalla, a funk club in the afterlife. To gain entry he has to fight his way through nine levels and three bosses of the world tree Yggdrasil to prove himself and defeat the bouncer who tossed him out. The game has a humorous tone and a comic-like visual style with bright colours and wacky characters.
As Magnus explores the levels he has two main actions: attacking and blocking. A distinct element adding to the combat is that the effectiveness can be massively improved by timing the actions to the beat of the music shown through notes scrolling by below the character. By timing correctly more damage is dealt, combo opportunities are opened up, and he is able to deflect attacks and dash. He has access to different types of weapons with two unique combos per weapon and the character can be customized through his backpack with different weapons, shields, helmet, clothing and potions. Magnus can also level up. Environments contain enemies, hazards and a lot of loot and destructible items. The game is free-to-play with microtransactions. Gold is the basic in-game currency used to buy new items. Platinum records act as the premium currency. They can be found in the game through drops and daily gifts, but additional ones can be bought for real money as well as a gold doubler to receive more gold from pick-ups. They can also be used to open up chests and get a chance to receive a powerful item. In addition the records are used to soul bind items so they are not lost after death and persist.
After completing the game a new hardcore difficulty level is opened up next to the regular one. Except for the use of soul bind the game has permadeath and random level generation.