Snowdrift is a standard platformer, in which you can move left and right on the ground, jump, and crouch. A unique mechanic of the game is the ability to slide if you crouch on ice while moving. If you are not sliding, any enemy or hazard that comes in contact with you will hurt you and remove 1/3 of your life. When sliding, most enemies that you touch will die in one hit. In addition you move much faster.
Another mechanic is the variety of platforms. Each one changes the way you move and your ability to attack. The standard terrain is snow on stone and only allows basic movement. Stone does the same. On any kind of ice you can slide, but there are different kinds of ice platforms, including melting ice,