Magic Pengel is centered on the player, as a character able to manipulate a "Pengel" (which looks like a stylized fairy combined with a paintbrush) to create a creature, or "Doodle". Using the Pengel (pronounced "pen-jell") as a cursor, the player simply sketches out the limbs, body, and other features. Depending on the amount of magic ink expended, and the types of body parts, the creature will be given certain statistics and created. With the help of Zoe and Taro, the character trains and battles using custom-created designs, which can be traded to or battled with the creations of other players. As the Doodles battle, they become more powerful, and earn points towards the purchase of pre-created Doodles, and extra abilities towards customizable creation. Combat functions according to three selections: attack, magic, and block, as well as a charge command. The three basic maneuvers follow a standard rock-paper-scissors methodology, but repetitiveness is minimized due to the varied attributes of the Doodles, as well as the inability to successively repeat any selection.