Wasted Dreams is an isometric action game with adventure elements. It can be played by one player controlling one or two characters or by two players controlling one character each. It takes place in a future where Earth is dying and a crew of space travellers leave their home planet to search for a new planet. After a long search they finally find one suitable for living on and establishes a base camp on it. Parts of the crew then make the trip back to Earth to relay the news of the discovery but something goes wrong and the ship explodes. Two members however manages to escape in a shuttle which they crash land on the planet.
The player gains control of his character immediately after the crash and can explore the world by moving in all eight directions. A gun can be found among the wreckage and it's needed since he soon will come across strange aliens that are far from friendly. Ammo is in limited supply though but more can be picked up from fallen enemies. If out of ammo it's still possible to fight by punching enemies that are close. In addition to the movement buttons, most of the action is done by a single context sensitive button. If close to an enemy it's used for aiming and shooting and if close to an item it can be used to examining or picking it up. The game's adventure elements mostly involve collecting items and using them in the right situation as well as talking to various characters.