The player must confine his movements to the center space where all the enemy aircraft direct their activity. The convoy of twelve trucks advances on the screen from lower right to lower left, directly beneath the air battle raging overhead. Just like in Defender, a long-range scanner is positioned at the very bottom of the screen and gives an enlarged view of what is coming so that you can be prepared. There are ten waves of attackers for each level of this game, twelve enemy ships to a wave. Twelve convoy trucks are trying to get through. With each succeedingly wave of aircraft moving faster and faster, it takes all the skill and coordination at your command to keep on top of all the action. The missile from the enemy aircraft split in two as soon as they're launched and thesse missiles not only are capable of destroying both truck and chopper, they are impervious to your return fire. This means it is essential that you dodge these missiles while continuing to fire at the craft that launched them..
Points are accumulated depending on how many enemy helicopters and jets you manage to shoot down. Trucks remaining in the convoy following an attack are counted and are also added to your score as bonus points. Achieving a score of 10,000 or more on the cadet level entitled the player to admission into the Activision Commandos and a cool looking patch (not anymore, of course.)
The graphics are the standard from Activision: colorful, realistic and active. Control is very fluid, and the game runs very smoothly. Characters in Chopper Command move and shoot and doge and defend and attack and all the rest of it. They are never passive or static, waiting for a player to bring them to live.
Visually appealing, full of action, fast-paced but somewhat lacking in originality, Chopper Command is an above-average 2600 game.