Honoring Our Elders

Posted February 23rd, 2010 by Kharin

Elder Whitehoof 490

In response to the roar of fireworks, the giant two-headed demon wolf emerges from the moonlit lake, shimmering water streaming from his slavering jaws, and plunges into the milling crowd.   All over the three continents of Azeroth – in Horde and Alliance cities and villages, in sandy deserts, deep forests, snow covered mountains and enemy filled dungeons – Elders give wise sayings and ancient coins to all who brave various dangers to pay their respects.  And little red envelopes begin to clutter up the mail box.  In 2010 the  Love in the Air had barely started (and has just now abruptly ended) when the Lunar Festival arrived with a bang.   (In 2011, the order is reversed with the Love in the Air festival following the Lunar Festival.)  And it’s clear that this seasonal event, unlike the Valentine’s event of 2010, has not had a radical makeover with roughly the same activities, quests, achievements and rewards as in previous years.

EDIT There are it seems minimal changes to the festival in 2011 – with some changes of location of the Elders to adjust for the changed topography following the Sundering.   For example, in the Eastern Kingdomss the Stormwind Elder with the Lunar Harbinger, Fireworks vendor and launchers, have been moved to just outside the gates of Stormwind from the destroyed park area (despite what the quest locator might indicate.)  In Kalimdor, the Orgrimmar Elder is now on the roof area near the flightpoint rather than in the Valleyof Wisdom next to where Thrall’s Hall used to be, theTaurajo Camp elder has moved a little north to Vendetta Point,  the Elder of Auberdine can now be found on the southern outskirts of Lor’danel.  For changes in 2012 check Newly Remembered Elders of the Cataclsym .

In the Lunar Festival the druids of Nighthaven Moonglade celebrate the ancient defeat of the Burning Legion.  The festival revolves around fireworks, lunar festive finery, ancestral coins and elders – lots and lots of elders – in fact 75 of them in total.   The elders are ancient heroes of Azeroth  – generally night elf, tauren or dwarven – who serenely stand bathed in a column of moonlight in the most unlikely of places.  This festival draws heavily from Chinese Lunar New Year celebrations in timing (following the Chinese lunar calendar), themes (clothing, food, fireworks, lanterns, red envelopes, red decorations) and even in legends (the story of Omen draws from the ancient Chinese legend of Nien).


  • The Lunar Festival (each of the major faction cities) – the Lunar Festival Emissary directs you to the Lunar Festival Harbinger in that city.  The Harbinger will then offer you…
  • Lunar Fireworks – launch 8 lunar fireworks and 2 cluster fireworks (these can be purchased from the Lunar Festival Vendor and fired from the launchers nearby).  Once completed you will receive a Lunar Festival Invitation (ports you to Moonglade when you stand in the circle of moonlight) and be offered the follow on quest …
  • Valadar Starsong– use you lunar invitation to travel to Moonglade and speak to Valadar Starsong.  The invitation is of limited duration but you can get another one from the Lunar Festival Harbinger if need be.  Once in Moonglade head north up to the village of Nighthaven.
  • Blessing of Elune – characters +40 will be offered a raid-style quest to defeat Omen (a force for good who had succumbed to the Burning Legion and was eventually defeated in Moonglade).  His shade sleeps in the waters of the lake to awaken during the Lunar Festival – by firing off fireworks or attacking his wolf servants with the Elune Candles.  Omen is a raid boss with 5.5 million hit points and strong attacks (cleave and star burst aoe) so that a group of players is required to defeat him.  The the Blessing of Elune buff is received by walking through the light focused on Omen’s corpse and is not dependent on whether the player participated in the kill.  The achievement and quest rewards (a fireworks pack, a elune lantern, some solide stone) will be obtained once the quest is finalised by handing it into to Valadar Starsong.   While you can pick up this quest line up again if you have completed it in previous years it does not seem possible to hand it in (as a duplicate item is detected).  Your toon will still get the hour long buff though.

The first three quests give experience and/or gold proportionate to the level of the player as well as rep with Cenarion Circle.  The last Quest gives an Elune stone (creates a temporary column of moonlight) as well as an Elune’s lantern with some solid stone to make more.

Lunar Festival Achievements

All these achievements with the exception of Elune’s Blessing are required for meta-achievement To Honor One’s Elders with the accompanying title Elder and therefore required for What a Long, Strange Trip It’s Been and the Violet proto-drake.

Overall, this festival gives some experience, gold and novelty items but no highly coveted gear, pets or mounts.  What it does give is the chance to explore Azeroth (as you criss-cross the three continents in search of elders);  some significant boosts to the often elusive faction reputations (useful in purchasing mounts of other friendly races and, also, towards the achievements Somebody Likes Me and Ambassador of the Alliance/Horde with its accompanying title) and (since 2011) level archaelogy.  And of course, it is necessary for the violet proto-drake.

Perhaps after the almost blatant commercialism of the Love is in the Air event, the Lunar Festival is refreshing in its emphasis on remembering the past and honouring past ancestral heroes across factional divides.  In the often fast-paced, rapidly changing, iconoclastic, individualistic, commercialised environment of our “real lives”, a reminder that the past and, dare I say it, our elders not only have value but may even have wisdom to offer us may be opportune.


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