Disclaimer: This guide was originally written by Melyria of Moon Guard (2008), and has been updated by Feyawen (2017). To help update this guide with new lore from Legion and other sources please PM the Keeper with updated information or write a post in our discussion forums, remember to include your citations.
Night Elf lore can be vague at times and they're a race far from human, meaning that everything about them, from social interaction to biology can be different. A person who hasn't roleplayed a Night Elf before or a fresh player might be intimidated by all the lore they have to sift through to get a good idea about what the Night Elves are about.
Ultimately, the plethora of quests, books and in game reading one has to do is astounding. I decided to take up that job so others don't have to, should they not want to. Buying books or doing every quest in a zone just to understand a race can get boring or drain your money. So I did all those quests, read all the books and comics, sifted through all the information and logged it all.
I care about the Night Elf / Darnassus community and the roleplay community as a whole. I want people to be able to join those groups without feeling intimidated. I want this to be a resource everyone can use, from new roleplayers to experienced ones, to people just interested in the lore.
Before you jump into the guide, I just want to express my gratitude for reading it. I put a lot of work into this and I hope everyone enjoys what I've put down here. I hope people will refrain from trolling or being mean. I hope some debate or discussion happens because of this.
I've cited a lot of things. My sources include the WoW comics, Stormrage, Wolfheart, the War of the Ancients Trilogy, the quests from every Night Elf zone (and then some) from pre and post-Cataclysm, archaeology finds, game manuals for both WoW and WC3, WC3 plus the expansion and things like the Cdevs and magazines. See citations at the end.