Paparazzi is a hidden object game in which the player takes on the part of a celebrity photographer to capture photos to be sold to the showbiz tabloids. The game provides a map of the places where the sought-after stars usually go to, and in every place there are objects that must be found in order to advance to the next location. The hidden object scenes challenge players to look even in the darkest corners. At times, players must do a little snooping and poke around the objects to find the items listed in the must-find list.
To help players along, the game provides hints that must be paid for using the money available at the start of the game. As the player advances, the hints become more and more expensive. The hints will show the player exactly where an object is hidden, so the player will only have to snap the camera to get the shot. Players are given a deadline within which all the hidden items must be found.
In addition to the hidden object scenes, Paparazzi also has mini-games, including one in which celebrities pop in and out of the scene and the player must click the mouse button quickly in order to capture the stars on camera. Another mini-game challenges the player to find the difference between two frames.