MMORPG: Where did the idea for contracts come from, and what really helped to shape it?
Joe Piepiora: Contracts came about as a result of our discussion surrounding how we reward players at level cap. While players can obtain valuable gear from adventures, dungeons and raids, on landscape their options are less varied and somewhat more limited. Contracts were initially created in order to fill a need for interesting daily activities that weren’t thematically tied together and could reward players with unique rewards at a cadence that felt reasonable. Players can complete PVE contracts and PVP contracts, each yielding unique rewards.
MMORPG: Do you see contracts being an alternate form of daily quest -- something that everyone does? How will they fit in to a gamer's schedule?
JP: I think it’s safe to say that contracts fill a role in our daily activities. There is a large list of contracts from which 5 PVE and 5 PVP contracts are pulled each day. I expect that players will gravitate toward them at the beginning of play sessions in order to see which contracts overlap with content they are interested in participating in that day.
MMORPG: What kind of rewards can we expect from contracts?
JP: Players can obtain veteran group gear and low-tier raid gear for participating in the contract system. There are also toys, mounts and pets that can only be found by completing contracts.
MMORPG: Are there thoughts on making a dungeon set of contracts too, or will the existing contracts include dungeon options?
JP: There is a Veteran Dungeon completion contract in the PVE list of contracts.
MMORPG: Contracts seem like a great daily reason to log in. But how many different contracts will there be, to keep things fresh?
JP: There are over 40 contracts for the launch of the system. We will continue to add new ones to the rotation as time goes on in order to keep things fresh.
MMORPG: Can contracts reward some of the better gear in the game to help people get Raid ready?
JP: Contracts are a great place to get powerful gear that will help prepare you for raid content. The final reward in the contract reward track provides a piece of assault or support gear for your class that is of low-tier raid quality. Each time the player receives the final reward the reward track cycles and resets, allowing a new reward to be earned next time. In time a dedicated contract-completer can earn a full set of raid quality gear to help them really dive into whatever content they choose. I expect more than a few raiders will be running contracts to gear up an alternate spec.
MMORPG: Will there be any rewards exclusive to contracts, or will the rewards mostly be stuff that's available in other areas of the game?
JP: While there is some cross-over in a few rewards from reward bags there are plenty of new, unique rewards available. There are a few toys, some mounts, pets and a few runes that can only be obtained by completing contracts.