The game contains thirty missions, each with the objective being to rescue prisoners being held captive in enemy bases. The layout of each level changes as the player progresses. There are three types of bases:
Home base – This is where the player can refuel the Airwolf and repair damage it may have taken.
Enemy airfield – This is where many of the enemy craft take off from. The base can be destroyed, which lessens the number of enemy aircraft pursuing the player.
Prisoner base – This is where the prisoners are being held. To rescue them, the player must successfully land Airwolf and rescue the prisoner.
Airwolf is equipped with missiles and a machine gun in order to fend off enemy craft and their weapons. In order to successfully complete a mission, the player must rescue all prisoners and reach the border of the level without losing all of their lives.