The Typing of the Dead has been described variously as a remake or as a mod of the original The House of the Dead 2. It retains the original's first-person rail shooter style, but instead of shooting zombies and other enemies the player must type out words or phrases to kill them. The required word, sentence or phrase is displayed in a box that appears with the enemy. The phrases' length and complexity increase as the game progresses. Other features retained include the rescue challenges that alter the path the game takes to its final destination and the secrets and bonus items hidden throughout the game. All levels contain specific challenge areas in which the player is required to kill a certain number of zombies in a limited time. These end with a boss battle that uses some altered form of usual gameplay, such as a long phrase or a question whose answer must be correctly typed. The console ports have "Original" and "Arcade" modes for the main storyline and "Tutorial," "Drill," and "Boss" modes for additional typing training. Most other changes are superficial, such as replacement of the weapons wielded by zombies with harmless items and equipping the AMS agents with keyboards attached to backpack Sega Dreamcasts with oversized batteries.