The player takes on the role of a rescue pilot and member of the elite international helicopter rescue team C.H.O.P.R. (Coordinated Helicopter Operations, Preservation and Rescue). The player must complete rescue missions by piloting the helicopter into hostile territory while evading or destroying enemy attacks.
The game is based on Choplifter, an Apple II game first published in 1982. Dan Gorlin, the creator of the original franchise, served as a design consultant for Choplifter HD.