Contingency Contract Guide
Table of contents
What the hell is CC?
The general idea of Contingency Contract is that you can pile on as little or as much difficulty onto a map as you want by selecting different difficulty elements (contracts). Each contract has a difficulty level assigned to it from 1 to 3, and the levels of all the contracts you picked are summed to get the total difficulty (risk level) for the map. CC is very much a skill-based endgame event, and having all the shiny operators and delete buttons in the game doesn’t guarantee success. Conversely, low-rarity units are by no means useless and are even central to some clear strategies. Despite CC basically being the Arknights version of walking across hot coals, it’s still relatively accessible to new players because of the way it rewards completion. Also, stages don’t cost [in-game] sanity, so you can just keep throwing yourself at a map with no penalties.
The permanent map sticks around for the entire 2 week duration of the event. Your goal (from an event reward standpoint) is to get to risk 18. Because of this, there are a lot more contract options than there are for the rotating maps, and getting risk 18 on the permamap is usually harder than getting risk 8 on daily maps. (Sometimes. Sometimes the daily maps are hell. More on that later.)
You get a medal for getting to risk 18 on the permamap at some point in the event. If you can accomplish this in week 1, the metal is cool and iridescent. However, week 1 risk 18 clears can be really hard for newer players; fortunately, in week 2, a bunch of new contracts get thrown into the pool. These tend to be easier than the base contracts and may push you over the edge.
Even with all that, getting R18 cam be difficult, but there are a variety of missions to complete that will reward you with currency even if you can’t get all the way there. There are missions for clears at each risk level from 1 to 18. There are also challenge missions that give you a set of 2-3 contracts to clear the map with. If you do all of the challenge missions, you'll get another medal.
Unsurprisingly, the daily maps change out every day. (The very first map is an exception and lasts the first two days of the event.) Your goal is to get to risk 8. You have a much more limited set of contracts for rotating maps, which means that the difficulty level of each day will vary wildly; the same map can either be a cakewalk or hell on earth depending on the contracts it has available.
As with the permamap, there are missions that reward you with currency even if you can’t make it all the way to risk 8. There are rewards for clearing the map at each risk level from 0 to 8. Daily maps also have one of the level 3 contracts designated as a “challenge contract.” The challenge contract is usually pretty annoying (worse than the other level 3 contract/s, if there are any), so you may not be able to deal with it on its own, let alone with other contracts! Fortunately, daily maps come with a buff contract; this buff forces the risk level of your clear to 0, so you can’t use it to clear any of the other missions, but you are allowed to use it to clear the challenge mission. The challenge mission is typically manageable with the buff, though it may still be challenging.
Contracts come in a few flavors:
- Ally debuffs
- Global enemy buffs
- Specific enemy buffs
- Environmental hazards
- Gameplay hindrances
- Class restrictions (bans, DP cost multipliers, increased redeployment time)
- Banned tiles
- Limited squad size or deployment cap
- Slow DP gain
- No leaks (1HP)
There is no overall rule to picking contracts. However, map familiarity can help out a lot, because knowing which parts of a level you struggle with can help you decide which contracts you feel safe taking and which you’d rather avoid. It’s also worth keeping in mind that lower individual contract difficulty doesn’t necessarily mean you should be picking every low-level contract - in some cases, two level 2 contracts will stack so annoyingly that you’re better off taking a level 3 and a level 1 to get to risk 4 instead, and so on. Example: If your consistent DPS isn’t super high but you have access to a delete button, it may be easier to take a difficult buff for the boss of a map than it would be to stack 2 seemingly easier global buffs. I recommend watching low-end clears to see how people tend to pick contracts for teams that don’t have a ton of firepower yet.
The 1HP contract in particular is typically seen as a freebie, but there are some scenarios where you will be able to get a higher risk clear with leaks than you would have been able to without, so I don’t think it’s mandatory (especially if there are only a couple enemies that are giving you a lot of problems).
Operator prep and teambuilding
You can get through CC with mostly E1 level 60-max units. You can even fudge it with level 50-55 units, although this will be a bit tighter. Your primary focus should be having a well-rounded roster; putting all your resources into Silverash sounds like a great idea until guards are banned. So you’re better off spreading your levels around. Still, resources are limited and you obviously can’t spread yourself too thin. Stat sticks are always good but it’s also a good idea to look at units that can fill multiple roles because they can make circumventing contracts a lot easier.
Enmity units are generally very contract-proof. They already can’t be healed, and their stats are so high that debuffs don’t hit them as hard as they do with some other classes. In the case of enmity guards, contracts that make them take more damage can actually be good for them since their ASPD gets buffed as their HP goes down. They’re not as useful in general gameplay, so keep this in mind in your building decisions, but they’re great to have around for CC.
Maps with reduced DP regeneration are where the standard bearer + Bagpipe combo comes in very handy. If you don’t have more immediate needs for support units, I highly recommend finding an E2 Bagpipe. Even if you don’t have standard bearers built, Bagpipe will help any other vanguards you have immensely. Charger vanguards in general are incredibly useful because you can use them to temporarily plug up lanes while you wait for DP, then retreat them for a full refund.
New players should virtually always take a support unit. Don’t shy away from using overpowered supports! The difficulty scaling in CC is wildly different than it is for maps in story mode, which means that 1. one busted unit can almost never trivialize a map and 2. busted units are sometimes even necessary for a clear because your team lacks raw stats. This is particularly applicable when you’re working primarily with a team of E1 units. There are maps and contract combinations that can be done with an E1 team and patience, so there’s no harm in trying to clear a map without resorting to the nuclear option, but you’re not giving up just because you end up needing to use Surtr.