How many times have you a heard of a console game ever getting ported to the Arcade? It’s usually the other way around right? Well not in this case. Choplifter was one of the minute number of titles to hold that crown, and it did for a particular reason…it was and still is an incredible game. As a strategy action title, Choplifter began to gain recognition once Sega got it’s hands on it, becoming one of the Master System’s more underrated 8-bit games.
Your main objective as a helicopter pilot is to save POW’s from several enemy territories, which belong to the fictional Bungeling Empire. Fight on land or swarm through the sea destroying tanks, aircrafts and vessels as you transport hostages to a safe home base. Strategy is the key to victory and unless you were gifted in maneuvering and timing attacks, you were in for some frustrating times with the Sega Master System. It wasn’t your typical side-scroller, it wasn’t a shooter like R-Type or Gradius. It put you to the test, as you had the ability to maneuver your chopper back and forth on the screen as you saved innocent prisoners.
You can ask any retro gamer about Choplifter and they’ll definitely describe it in one word: Classic. A Playstation 2 version was planned at one point, but was cancelled due to the horrendous development of the game (look at the trailer below). Who knows what the future holds for the franchise, but revisiting the shoot’em up/stradegy title is always a breath of fresh air.