Your first mission? Don't worry. Everyone gets a little nervous.
Just make sure you carefully read this instruction manual first.
You'll be dealing with some very sophisticated equipment, and an
extremely tricky enemy. So, good luck. The guys on the ground are
counting on ya!
Chopper Command Basics
The object of the game is to accumulate as many points as possible by
knocking out enemy aircraft, while protecting yourself and your truck
convoys at the same time.
1. Hook up your video game system. Follow manufacturer's instructions.
2. With power OFF, plug in game cartridge.
3. Turn power ON. If no picture appears, check connection of your game
system to TV, then repeat steps 1-3.
4. Plug in Joystick Controller/s (solo player uses left Joystick).
5. Set both difficulty switches to 'b' to begin. Switches in this
position will cause fast continuous fire from your chopper when red
button is depressed. Set switches in 'a' position for slower continuous
6. Select game with game select switch:
Cadet Level Commander Level
Game 1: one player Game 3: one player
Game 2: two players Game 4: two players
7. To start, press game reset and allow helicopter to position itself
on left side of screen. Action begins as soon as you move the Joystick
or push the red button.
8. The Joystick Controller is held with the red button in the upper
left position. Pressing the button will fire cannons. Holding the
button down will activate the continuous fire mode. Pushing the
Joystick up will cause your helicopter to ascend, pulling it back will
bring it down. Moving the Joystick left or right will cause your
heliopter to face to the left or to the right. Pushing the Joystick to
the left or to the right will move your helicopter in that direction.
Note to owners of Sears Tele-Games Video Arcade: Difficulty is called
skill left (or right) player and 'a' is 'expert' and 'b' is 'novice'.
Special Features of Chopper Command by Activision
1. The Long Range Scanner at the bottom of the screen will enable you
to detect both approaching truck convoys (friendly) and enemy aircraft
well ahead of time. The truck convoys appear as white "blips" on the
very bottom of the scanner while enemy aircraft appear as white "blips"
above the convoy. Your helicopter gunship is the black dot. You can
calculate that the area represented on the long range scanner is
roughly 5 miles, while the area portrayed on the large screen is about
2. There are increasing levels of intensity. Each level will start
with a wave of twelve enemy ships and twelve trucks in your convoy.
There are ten waves of enemy attackers, with each wave being faster
than the one before. Take care! Enemy aircaft fire multi-warhead
missiles which will split in two after being launched from their
aircraft. These missiles can destroy both your helicopter and the
trucks below, and, since you cannot shoot the missiles down, you must
3. You have an unlimited supply of ammunition, so go ahead and blanket
the sky with your laser cannons.
4. Scoring. Each time you shoot down an enemy helicopter, you earn 100
points. For every enemy jet you shoot down, you will be credited with
200 points. Should you wipe out an entire wave of hostile aircraft,
you will receive a bonus calculated by multiplying the number of trucks
remaining in the convoy times the wave number achieved (one through
ten) times 100.
5. You have helicopter reserves. You start the game with three
choppers in your fleet. For every 10,000 points you score, an extra
helicopter will be added to your squadron, up to a maximum of six. The
number of extra choppers appears under the score.
Getting the Feel of Chopper Command by Activision
You'll be amazed how responsive your chopper is to the slightest
movements of the Joystick. Pushing the Joystick up will cause your
helicopter to climb; pulling it back will make your craft descend.
Right or left movements will guide your gunship's horizontal motion.
After flying in one direction, pushing the Joystick in the opposite
direction will cause an immediate 180o turn. Notice also that your
chopper "drifts" slightly after pivoting 180o (this should be helpful
in better timing your shots).
Your chopper can hover close to the ground, but be careful not to
collide with your convoy. You'll destroy the helicopter and a truck.
Remember, don't be too aggressive at first. Keep your chopper on the
left side of the screen facing right, and size up the situation. This
will give you time to better recognize enemy tactics. Then, when you
feel more confident, you can seek out the enemy and get them before
they get to you or your trucks.
The long range scanner is a very useful tool. However, you'll have to
keep your eyes on the larger video screen and the scanner at the same
time. Watching one and not the other could be dangerous. Don't
forget, the long range scanner is for estimating the positions of enemy
aircraft and not for lining up shots. You cannot hit the enemy unless
you can see them on the larger screen.
Join the Activision "Commandos"
If you reach a score of 10,000 points (or more) on the Cadet level, you
will be eligible to join this prestigious organization. Just send us a
picture of your TV screen and we'll present you with a special
How to Become a "Commando" at Chopper Command by Activision
Tips from Bob Whitehead, designer of Chopper Command
Bob Whitehead is a Senior Designer at Activision. Before creating
Chopper Command, Bob designed Boxing, Skiing and Stampede for
"As you'll soon discover, Chopper Command takes quick reflexes and keen
coordination. However, there is a strategic side to the game as well."
"For example, your truck convoys will always travel from the right to
the left. And so will the enemy formations. Knowing this, you can
position yourself at the left side of the screen and start firing as
soon as the enemy aircraft appear. This is important because your
helicopter's chances of being hit by a multi-warhead missile increase
the closer the enemy aircraft get. The enemy pilots are real
kamikazes, too, and they'll collide with you if they can't shoot you
"Good luck! I hope you have as much fun playing Chopper Command as I
had designing it. God Bless."
P.S. Drop my a line. I'd sure like to hear how our guys are doing at
Look for more Activision video games wherever you buy video game
cartridges. Drop us a note, and we'll gladly add your name to our
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Activision, Inc., 3255-2 Scott Blvd., Santa Clara, CA 95051
ATARI and Video Computer System are trademarks of ATARI, INC.
Tele-Games and Video Arcade are trademarks of Sears, Roebuck and Co.
C 1982 Activision AX-015-03 Printed in U.S.A.
-------------------Atari 2600 Instructions Archive-------------------
This document obtained from the History of Home Video Games Homepage,
©1997-1998 by Greg Chance