The Laura Bow games were distinctive in that they required some actual logical detective work on the part of the player; for the most part, though, the puzzles were of the typical variety of inventory and environment interaction (and frequent, often unexpected, player character death) found in most Sierra adventures.
Gameplay uses a point-and-click interface featuring icons for different actions, similar to other Sierra games that were published during that time. An additional icon is used to ask characters a question about a topic listed in Laura's notebook, which auto-populates with names, places and other subjects that she has previously heard or encountered.
The identity of the murderer is not automatically revealed at the end of the game. Instead, the player is asked a series of a questions, ostensibly by the police, to prove that Laura had solved the crimes and discovered the secrets of the other suspects. If the questions are answered incorrectly, the coroner will give a hint to point the player towards the path that would have revealed the correct answer in subsequent playing of the games. The ending of the game can change depending on the answers given to the questions, most notably in that Laura can be killed if the player doesn't know the identity of the main murderer.
The game includes "The Official Guide to the Leyendecker Museum", which also serves as the game's manual. It features a map of the main level of the museum and a rough drawing of the lower level.