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The OverAchiever: Guide to Lunar Festival 2011

Allison Robert

Every Thursday, The Overachiever shows you how to work toward those sweet achievement points. This week, we shine our light on the the Lunar Festival.

The Lunar Festival runs this year from Sunday, Jan. 23 through Sunday, Feb. 13. That's right, folks; you've got three weeks to get everything done. The basics of the holiday involve talking to a number of elders to honor them, receiving Coins of Ancestry in return, and then using the coins to purchase holiday items. The To Honor One's Elders meta-achievement is also a requirement for What A Long, Strange Trip It's Been, so if you're still after a Violet Proto-Drake, you'll need to work on this holiday. This is not one of Azeroth's more difficult holidays, but it's definitely time-consuming if you're starting from scratch; you'll need to hunt down a lot of NPCs. Due to the mileage you'll rack up doing this, this would be a great time to do World Explorer and/or Surveying the Damage. It'll also be a good excuse for higher-level characters to pick up the new flight paths that have popped up all over the place.

I've updated and expanded our 2010 guide, but fair warning -- the location of a number of elders has likely changed due to Cataclysm's impact on Azeroth's landscape. While I doubt that most of them are substantially different, nothing's been datamined yet concerning this. In the days after the holiday goes live, I'll be updating the guide to include a list of new coordinates.

EDIT: This guide is in the process of being updated. Please bear with me while I check through all the Elders!

Honoring elders is pretty easy -- find 'em, right-click on 'em, and have a nice chat. They're always sitting in a big beam of light, so they tend to stand out. You'll need to speak with all of the following elders in the Eastern Kingdoms in order to complete this achievement, and I've listed them in rough order from the northern part of the continent to the southern.

For now, I'll keep the pre-Cataclysm coordinates around, because I don't think that elders have moved all that much (in the event that they've moved at all), but just keep in mind that several are probably inaccurate. The degree of their inaccuracy remains to be seen, but elders are rarely located all that far from flight paths.
Elders of Kalimdor

Once you're all set with the Eastern Kingdoms, hop a boat or zeppelin to the west and talk to all of the Kalimdor elders. Again, I've listed them in order from the northern end of the continent to the southern, and take the current coordinates with a grain of salt.

Elders of the Alliance

You'll also need to talk to a series of elders located in capital cities, which will mean the oft-hairy process of having to enter enemy cities. This should be somewhat easier these days now that you can fly straight into enemy cities, but the odds of being knocked off your mount by airborne guards or hostile players are still pretty good. The three Alliance elders are easy enough if you're -- well, Alliance, but Horde will have some work to do here. Keeping this in mind, the instructions below are written with an eye toward locating elders if you're a member of the opposite faction, and I've kept instructions for finding the elders on foot if your character isn't able to fly in Azeroth yet.
  • Bladeswift the Elder 33,14 in the Cenarion Enclave in Darnassus. This is located in the northern part of the city and just south of the new Howling Oak area. Sorry, Horde -- there's no real way to cheese this. You'll have to run in off the boat to Rut'theran Village, get past the guards, hang a left, and make a beeline for the Cenarion Enclave. This will keep you away from the most "crowded" area of Darnassus (insofar as any portion of Darnassus could be termed "crowded"). As long as you're on Teldrassil, keep heading east afterwards to talk to Elder Bladeleaf in Dolanaar.
  • Bronzebeard the Elder 29,17 in the Mystic Ward of Ironforge. If you're Horde, hang a left after entering the city's front gates and drop down into the trench that runs the the length of The Commons -- this should get most of the guards off your tail. Keep going, and the first ramp up from the trench should put you within sight of Elder Bronzebeard. At this point, you can hearth (if possible), port to Moonglade using a scroll from a Festival Harbinger, or get to the Deeprun Tram so you can knock off the Stormwind elder without having to enter the city from the front gates or harbor.
  • Hammershout the Elder 35.65 in the Park in Stormwind ... which Deathwing blew up. Right. Suffice it to say I have no idea where this guy is nowadays, but I'll look for him as soon as the holiday goes live.
Elders of the Horde

It's slightly less troublesome for Alliance to reach the Horde elders than vice versa, but the odds of your attracting attention while doing these is still reasonably high. As with their Alliance counterparts, the Horde elders are simple to reach if you're Horde, so I'm writing this with an eye toward the difficulty of reaching them as an Alliance player.
  • Darkhorn the Elder 41,35 in the Valley of Wisdom in Orgrimmar -- or at least, that's where he used to be located. This one's still going to be the worst of the Horde elders to reach. The Valley of Wisdom is now Orgrimmar's tauren district, so it's possible that Darkhorn's moved. If he's still in the Valley of Wisdom, you can avoid the most crowded portion of Orgrimmar by zoning in through the western gate. Once you're in, follow the raised walkway through the troll district through a tunnel and hang a left. The Valley of Wisdom will be directly ahead. While the tauren district tends to be significantly less crowded than the central portion of Orgrimmar, I still see plenty of traffic here. If you're flying, just drop in from the north or west so you encounter as few guards as possible.
  • Wheathoof the Elder 72,23 on Elder Rise in Thunder Bluff. This is an elder named for Ezra Chatterton, a young player who died in 2008 and was the first to receive a phoenix mount. Ezra Wheathoof is one of Blizzard's in-game nods to him (he's actually a copy of Ezra's character, Ephoenix), and you'll note he's the only elder to have a pet with him (not surprisingly, a phoenix). Because Thunder Bluff is usually deserted, you should encounter minimal player resistance, but you can still cut down on encounters with Horde players by using the northern elevator if you can't fly. Hang a quick left into the "bridge building" after you come up (mouseover the beam over the entrance to see where it goes and confirm you've got the bridge to Elder Rise), and head over; you'll see the elder to the left of the big druids' tent on Elder Rise. If you're getting harassed by Horde players or guards, you can jump off the Rise afterwards, although I recommend having a slow fall effect of some kind prepared so that you survive the jump. If you're flying, getting to Wheathoof will be absurdly simple -- just fly over to the Elder Rise and talk to him without ever getting off your mount.
  • Darkcore the Elder 66,38 in the Ruins of Lordaeron above Undercity. This guy's easy to find, although with increased Horde traffic on the zeppelins during the Lunar Festival, the odds of running into high-level players getting on and off the elevators is pretty good. Ride or fly into the Ruins of Lordaeron above the city and keep going straight; you'll find the elder in the circular throne room along with the rest of the Lunar Festival NPCs.

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