The Balloon Fighter handheld is bright green and rectangular, with a gray directional pad on the left and one large red button on the right. There is also a smaller, gray, and oval-shaped button directly under the red button, as well as speaker grilles on the bottom corners and a power indicator light under the screen. The overall design, including the main body's shape and color as well as the number of buttons, are based on the Balloon Fight Game & Watch. There are also several other versions seen in-game which are different colors, each based on another New Wide Screen series Game & Watch game:
- Orange Case
- Seen in 18-Volt's section, as the "Ultra Speed" version.
- Same color as "Climber", another New Wide Screen Game & Watch, which had an identical button layout to Balloon Fight and had an orange case.
- Red Case
- Seen in 18-Volt's section, as the "Hardcore" version.
- Same color as "Mario's Cement Factory", another New Wide Screen Game & Watch which had a similar button layout to Balloon Fight and had a red case.
- Light Blue Case
- Seen in the "Cluck-a-pop" Prize section, where the system can be played freely and only plays one microgame.
- Same color as "Super Mario Bros.", another New Wide Screen Game & Watch, which had an identical button layout to Balloon Fight and had a light blue case.
This game has similar gameplay to the majority of the WarioWare series, where the player must complete microgames within a time limit until they run out of lives. The player starts with four lives, represented by the four Balloons holding up the Balloon Fighter, which can be seen between microgames. All games are controlled using the directional pad and A button. Every few microgames, the game will speed up, decreasing the time limit and causing the microgames to play faster. There is occasionally a boss microgame, which when beaten either ends the game or returns a lost life to the player, depending on the mode.
In 9-Volt's mode, the player must manage both completing microgames and pretending to sleep when his mother checks on him. If the player pretends to sleep for too long, they will lose because 9-Volt falls asleep. If the player fails to avoid getting caught, the game will also instantly end. The games must be played on the Wii U Gamepad screen in Game & Wario, or on the touch screen in WarioWare Gold. All indications of whether his mother is about to check on him are on the TV or top screen.
In 18-Volt's mode, only seen in Game & Wario, the element of avoiding getting caught by 5-Volt is removed. Instead, the goal is to simply get a high score in the game. There are also other versions of the Balloon Fighter game in this mode with higher difficulty. Instead of limiting the microgame view to only the Gamepad, it is also duplicated to the TV during gameplay.
- The back of the device is rarely shown, but when seen, it actually has the same kick-stand and serial number sticker that appeared on the Balloon Fight Game & Watch.
- There is apparently a high score leaderboard which shows the top three players, though this is only seen in the opening cutscene to "Gamer". The highest score is saved and displayed at all times when you play it in-game, however.
- Unlike most 9-Volt stages, not all of the microgames are based on Nintendo Franchises.
- There are two Nintendo themed microgames included, being Ball (G&W) and Super Fly Swatter.
- Since Balloon Fight is only the theme of the between microgame screens, this is the only 9-Volt stage without a Balloon Fight themed Microgame as well.
- The system sometimes shows up in the background of the "Gamer" stage in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. It acts somewhat as a hazard, since 5-Volt (9-Volt's Mother) sometimes will come out of it, and if she sees any players, they will be damaged.