In the opening story of the game, the Water Buffalos' leader, the Great Poobah, decides to retire. As his last decree as Great Poobah, he makes a contest in which whoever finds the Treasure of Sierra Madrock will be his successor. In the game, Fred Flintstone and Barney Rubble must find the treasure before any other Buffalo member (or even their wives, Wilma and Betty). The game features passwords that must be written down in order to continue the game from the highest level reached.
The game itself first involves a world map representing a zone. Both characters move like they would in a traditional board game by rolling dice and move to the appropriate space. Depending on the landed space, the player must clear a stage, defeat bosses, or enter shops, among other things. On some zones, Wilma and Betty appear and if any one of them manage to meet their respective husband, she will drag him some spaces back to an arbitrary location. The levels themselves are simple platformer segments. In these segments, the characters must traverse from left to right, while avoiding hazards and defeating dinosaurs, Water Buffalo members or other creatures. In order to defeat enemies, Fred and Barney use a wood club that can be charged.
There are also powerups such as brontoburger (energy) and clams, which are used to buy items in shops. In a few cases, a powerup is a trap in which the Cavemouse appears, being followed by Dino. Unlike the TV show, Dino actually hurts the player if he is hit by him. The earlier zones in the game can only be cleared by first defeating specific Water Buffalo members (most of which appeared at some point in the cartoon series) by winning them in a race located at a stadium. For that purpose, they must be found. If any character go to the stadium, the race can be practiced. Once defeated, they will give an item to both Fred and Barney, so that they can go the next zone.