Gameplay is turn-based, with each team moving in sequence (which is determined randomly) across two-dimensional terrain. During a single turn, a team can only move one of its worms (unless the Select Worm item is used). Worms can walk and jump, as well as (when the proper items are available) swing by rope, parachute, teleport, and bungee. The objective of a traditional match is to defeat all opposing teams by killing their worms, although in the campaign some missions have other objectives (such as collecting a specific crate).
Each worm begins the round with a specific amount of health (which is predefined by the chosen game options or by scripting in campaign levels). When hit with a weapon, the worm will lose health depending on the power of the weapon and the directness of the hit. A worm can be killed either by having its health reduced to zero or being knocked into the water around and below the level.
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