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Lunatic Cultist
Lunatic Cultist
Map Icon Lunatic Cultist
Map Icon
Classic mode icon Classic
Expert mode icon Expert
Master mode icon Master
AI TypeLunatic Cultist AI
Damage50/75/112 (melee)
3672 (Shadow Fireball)
70100 (Ice Mist)
6080 (Fireball)
90120 (Lightning Orb)
120160 (Ancient Light)
304567 (Ancient Doom)
60180402 (Prophecy's End)
Max Life320004800061000
Defense42 / 27 (≤50% health)
KB Resist100%
Immune toAll debuffs except Whip debuffs
Inflicts debuff
Inflicts debuff
Inflicts debuff
DebuffOn Fire!On Fire!
Debuff tooltipSlowly losing life
Chance100% (Fireball)
Duration0.5–2.51–5 seconds
Ancient Cultist / Lunatic CultistDecoy
Ancient Cultist
Map Icon Lunatic Cultist
Map Icon
Classic mode icon Classic
Expert mode icon Expert
Master mode icon Master
AI TypeLunatic Cultist AI
Max Life10000
Defense35 / 22 (≤50% health)
KB Resist100%
Immune toAll debuffs
Ancient Cultist Trophy"The fanatical leader of the Dungeon coven..."Ancient Cultist Trophy
Not to be confused with Cultist.

The Lunatic Cultist is a Hardmode, post-Golem boss summoned by killing the Cultists that spawn at the Dungeon's entrance after Golem is defeated. Defeating the Lunatic Cultist initiates the Lunar Events.

After all four Celestial Pillars have been destroyed, The Moon Lord will spawn and the Cultists will respawn at the Dungeon entrance, allowing the player to fight the Lunatic Cultist and initiate the Lunar Events again.

Unlike most bosses, the Lunatic Cultist does not drop any weapons; however, it does drop the Ancient Manipulator, a placeable item that is used to craft many endgame items.

While the Lunatic Cultist is alive, the music Golem will play. When Otherworldly music is enabled, the track Boss 2 (Otherworldly) will play instead.


The Lunatic Cultist makes its first brief appearance at the Mysterious Tablet as soon as the Cultists are defeated. It is not vulnerable to attack at this time. It then warps to just above where the player was when the teleport started, and cycles between three attacks:

  • A burst of three FireballFireballs (four in Expert Mode) that lightly home in on the player, exploding on impact
  • A ball of Ice MistIce Mist that fires ice shards in six directions four times over as it flies in one direction before slowly fading away
  • A Lightning OrbLightning Orb that fires five bolts of lightning at the character

When the Lunatic Cultist reaches half health, it will occasionally replace an attack with two spreads of five destructible Ancient LightAncient Light projectiles.

In Expert Mode after reaching half health, it may also replace an attack with numerous Ancient DoomAncient Dooms that fire four purple Prophecy's EndProphecy's End projectiles in a cross pattern.

The Lunatic Cultist cycles through five attacks (six when below half health) before proceeding to spawn phantom duplicates of itself called Ancient Cultists, along with a larger version of the Mysterious Tablet via a "ritual". Unless the one true Lunatic Cultist is interrupted by an attack from a player during this ritual, the duplicates fly in formation and add their homing Shadow FireballShadow Fireball attacks.

Attacking a duplicate or taking too long hitting the real cultist results in the summoning of the Wyvern-like Phantasm DragonPhantasm Dragon. If there is already a Phantasm Dragon inbound, attacking a duplicate triggers an Ancient VisionAncient Vision, which will charge the player diagonally. Duplicates can be eliminated by hitting the true Lunatic Cultist during the ritual, but if not, large quantities of duplicates can amass.

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  • Lunatic Cultist



    Achievement Obsessive Devotion
    Obsessive Devotion • Defeat the Ancient Cultist, fanatical leader of the dungeon coven.
    Defeat the Lunatic Cultist for the first time.
    Category: Slayer Slayer


    Lunatic Cultist   Ancient Cultist
    The real Lunatic Cultist (left) and the decoy (right).
    For more elaborate strategies on defeating the Lunatic Cultist, including weapon and arena recommendations, see Guide:Lunatic Cultist strategies.
    • Avoid defeating the Lunatic Cultist if you are not yet ready for the Lunar Events. Beating the Lunatic Cultist causes the Lunar Events to begin immediately, and there is no way to de-summon them thereafter (aside from defeating them).
    • The real Lunatic Cultist can be distinguished from its fakes in a number of ways:
      • The real Cultist is the only one with a health meter.
      • The real Cultist has narrow slit-like eyes, while the clones' eyes are holes.
      • The real Lunatic Cultist has a line on its hood while the fakes do not.
      • Most minions and homing weapons will only attack the real Cultist.
        • This is not true as of version Homing bullets act like regular bullets and minions will not target the cultist or its decoys, although minions that deal contact damage may accidentally damage them. Interestingly, Flaming Jack projectiles from The Horseman's Blade and the Spectre Mask's damaging orbs will still target the real Cultist.
      • The real Cultist does not emit light, while the decoys do; however, this may only be apparent if fought at night.
      • Using a Hunter Potion will only highlight the real Cultist.
      • In normal mode, the decoy Cultists are named "Ancient Cultist" instead of "Lunatic Cultist". In Expert mode, however, the decoys will also be named "Lunatic Cultist".
    • Using Autopause grants as much time as needed for identifying the real Cultist.
    • Attacking a decoy Cultist is not a bad idea if the player uses the Vampire Knives. The resulting Phantasm Dragon is very long and may be easily targeted to restore some life.
    • Many of the Lunatic Cultist's attacks can be blocked by hiding behind solid blocks. A weapon that attacks through blocks or a yoyo can be used to continue dealing damage.
    • There is little reason to farm the Lunatic Cultist itself, as its only non-vanity drops are healing potions and the Ancient Manipulator, which you only need one of and does not sell for any money. However, defeating it is the only way to access the Lunar Events and the various fragments.
    • The mobile targeting system resets every time the Lunatic Cultist switches to another attack.
    • The Lunatic Cultist can spawn decoys above the map, forcing the player to take a gamble and most likely pick the wrong cultist. Try to stay away from the top of the world during the fight so this doesn't happen.


    • The Lunatic Cultist's attacks appear to be based on the four Celestial Pillars from the Lunar Events.
    • It is a common belief that the Cultists' design was inspired by Crowno's set. However, according to Crowno, the Lunatic Cultist was designed first.[1]
    • The boss' appearance resembles a plague doctor costume, which was an outfit worn by plague doctors in the 13th century intended to protect them from airborne diseases.
    • It is the smallest boss and the only one without an awakening message.
    • The Lunatic Cultist's mask, trophy, and achievement refer to it as Ancient Cultist rather than Lunatic Cultist, still using an early development name. Several other enemy drops from 1.3 also retained their early development names until later patches.
      • In addition to this, an unimplemented achievement refers to it as the Insane Cultist, while the implemented achievement refers to him as the Ancient Cultist.
    • The Lunatic Cultist has an Expert Mode Treasure Bag in the game files for Terraria, but it is currently unobtainable as it does not actually drop it.
    • This is the only boss to use music specifically titled after another boss, Golem, and the only boss whose music starts before the boss itself spawns, making it easier to obtain the music box.
    • The term lunatic is nowadays usually used as an informal synonym for insane, mentally ill, etc. The word itself, however, originated from the fact that diseases were historically thought to have been caused by the moon, tying in with the moon-themed events following this boss.
    • The Lunatic Cultist, Brain of Cthulhu, Moon Lord, King Slime, Queen Slime, and, in Expert Mode, Duke Fishron are the only bosses that can teleport.
    • The head icon displayed on the map is also shown for the Ancient Cultists.
    • When the Lunatic Cultist first spawns, glowing particles start flowing to it from the Mysterious Tablet and it makes a noise that sounds like a heavily edited voice clip. It is randomly chosen from the following: .
    After this, it makes a laugh-like sound (also altered) and tilts up its mask and shakes, to appear as if it is laughing at the player.
    • Oddly, when the Lunatic Cultist is killed, the status message "Celestial creatures are invading!" appears before "Lunatic Cultist has been defeated!", hinting that the summoning ritual might have finished before the Lunatic Cultist died.
    • When the Lunatic Cultist despawns after a player has teleported away from it, it plays its dying animation.
    • Wearing the Lunatic Cultist Mask and the Lunar Cultist Robe causes the player to look very similar to the Lunatic Cultist, however, the boss is still taller than the player, and is therefore distinguishable.
    • When defeated with Blood and Gore enabled, the Lunatic Cultist's head has round eyes, possibly indicating that it spawned a decoy to die in its place. Nonetheless, it can be respawned just like any other boss. This may be explain why the achievement for defeating the Lunatic Cultist refers to it as the ancient cultist, due to the duplicates used in one of the boss's attacks being called an Ancient Cultist.
    • The Lunatic Cultist is one of the few bosses in which all of its attacks, other than melee, do not increase linearly in Master Mode.
    • It is the only non-event boss not to have an Expert Mode-exclusive drop.
    • The Lunatic Cultist has the most types of "servants" out of all the bosses, totaling at four.
    • When the Lunatic Cultist teleports and begins another attack he says something that sounds like "You shall know no more", implying that the ritual was something the player was not meant to see.

    The BestiaryBestiary entry for the Lunatic Cultist: "A fanatical leader hell-bent on bringing about the apocalypse by reviving the great Cthulhu through behind-the-scenes scheming."


    • Desktop 1.4.4:
      • Health scaling factor in Expert/Master increased from 1.25 to 1.5
      • Final Health values have increased from 32k/40k/51k to 32k/48k/61k
      • Ancient Light projectiles are no longer instantly killed, but actually take some damage to kill, and will be targetted by homing projectiles, soaking up some of your damage.
    • Desktop
      • No longer respawns while the Moon Lord is spawning.
      • Can no longer spawn during important events like boss fights, invasions etc.
      • Fixed rare occurrence of cultists sinking into the floor in multiplayer.