Elder Scrolls
Elder Scrolls

"This is it men! It's time to make this city ours! We come to this moment carried by the sacrifices and the courage of our fellows. Those who have fallen. And those still bearing the shields to our right."
Ulfric Stormcloak[src]

Battle for Solitude is a quest available in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim in which the Dragonborn must assist the Stormcloaks in attacking Solitude and ending the Empire's control over Skyrim. This quest is only available if the Dragonborn joined the Stormcloaks.


I am to join Ulfric Stormcloak in the final attack on Solitude, putting an end to the Imperial Legion in Skyrim, once and for all.


  1. Get your orders from Ulfric Stormcloak
  2. Force General Tullius to surrender
  3. Execute General Tullius


Alongside Ulfric Stormcloak, Galmar Stone-Fist and an army of Stormcloak warriors, the Dragonborn leads to pursue General Tullius to surrender to the Stormcloak Rebellion.

Outside of Castle Dour Ulfric will begin his rousing speech:

"This is it men! It's time to make this city ours! We come to this moment carried by the sacrifices and the courage of our fellows. Those who have fallen. And those still bearing the shields to our right."

"On this day, our enemy will witness the fullness of our determination, the true depth of our anger and the exhalted righteousness of our cause. The gods are watching. The spirits of our ancestors are stirring. And the men under suns yet to dawn will be transformed by what we do here today. Fear neither pain, nor darkness."

"For Sovngarde awaits those who die with weapons in their hands, and courage in their hearts. We now fight our way to Castle Dour to cut the head off the legion itself! And in that moment, the gods will look down and see Skyrim as she was meant to be. Full of Nords who are mighty, powerful, and free! Ready now! Everyone, with me! For the sons and daughters of Skyrim!"

Attacking the city[]

The Dragonborn must enter the city with Ulfric Stormcloak, Galmar Stone-Fist, and a group of Stormcloaks. Imperial soldiers will storm out of different places, to attack. Be careful not to dwell here for too long, as the Imperial soldiers simply respawn in groups as they are killed. Move on into the city, break through the barricades and head left. More Imperials will spawn in the courtyard. Killing them is not required, and they will spawn ad infinitum. Door to Tullius' chambers can be found immediately left of the last barrier.

It is entirely possible to infinitely increase combat skills with this battle. As long as the Dragonborn does not kill the archers on top of the roofs just before the General is encountered, Imperial soldiers will continue to spawn in the courtyard. This can be quite useful to level combat skills. However, accidentally attacking Ulfric or Galmar too many times will cause them to become hostile. Transforming into werewolf form will also cause the Stormcloak soldiers to become hostile. You can also use Odahviing as heavy firepower against the Imperials and the Stormcloaks will not be hostille towards him.

After defeating all the soldiers stationed in the city streets, Ulfric will enter Castle Dour to confront General Tullius and Legate Rikke. Once inside, Rikke and Tullius will be found in the war room. Tullius, having given up at this point, will offer little resistance. However, Rikke will refuse to allow Ulfric to kill her general, saying that she would rather die for the cause she believes in than surrender.

The three negotiating in the Civil War's final hours.

Ulfric: "Secure the door."
Galmar: "Already done."
Rikke: "Ulfric. Stop."
Ulfric: "Stop what? Taking Skyrim back from those who'd leave her to rot?"
Rikke. "You're wrong. Ulfric. We need the Empire. Without it Skyrim will assuredly fall to the Dominion."
Galmar: "You were there with us. You saw it. The day the Empire signed that damn treaty was the day the Empire died."
Ulfric: "The Empire is weak, obsolete. Look at how far we've come and with so little. When we're done rooting out Imperial influence here at home, then we will take our war to the Aldmeri Dominion."
Rikke: "You're a damn fool."
Galmar: "Stand aside woman. We've come for the General."
Rikke: "He has given up. But I have not."
Ulfric: "Rikke. Go. You're free to leave."
Rikke: "I'm also free to stay and fight for what I believe in."
Ulfric: "You're also free to die for it."
Rikke: "This is what you wanted? Shield brothers and sisters killing each other? Families torn apart? This is the Skyrim you want?!"
Galmar: "Damnit woman, stand aside."
Rikke: "That's not the Skyrim I want to live in."
Ulfric: "Rikke. You don't have to do this."
Rikke: "You've left me no choice... Talos preserve us."

Ulfric can be interrupted during his speech to be spoken to about Rikke:

"War always comes down to this, doesn't it? A single truth-laden moment."

Just kill her and get it over with. "I fear that will be the way of it."
You're not going to kill her, are you? "It's up to her, isn't it?"

Inside, head to General Tullius and Legate Rikke. Fight until Tullius surrenders to Ulfric and Galmar. After the conversation, Ulfric will ask if the Dragonborn would prefer to be the one to end Tullius' life. Optionally, the Dragonborn may elect to have Ulfric do the killing. Ulfric will give the Dragonborn his Sword of Devouring (in v1.9 a Daedric Sword of the Vampire), which absorbs enemy health when struck. The statistics of this weapon are level dependent.

With a prayer to Talos being her final words, Rikke pulls out her sword to fight for what she believes in, as will the General. It is not long before she falls, and only Tullius remains. When the latter has also been beaten, he will surrender to Ulfric:

Tullius: "Enough... enough..."
Ulfric: "This is it for you. Any last words before I send you to Oblivion?"
Tullius: "You realize this is exactly what they wanted."
Galmar: "What who wanted?"
Tullius: "The Thalmor. They stirred up trouble here. Forced us to divert needed resources and throw away good soldiers quelling this rebellion."
Ulfric: "It's a little more than a rebellion, don't you think?"
Galmar: "Heh."
Tullius: "We aren't the bad guys you know."
Ulfric: "Maybe not, but you certainly aren't the good guys."
Tullius: "Perhaps you're right. But then what does that make you?"
Ulfric: "You just said it yourself."
Galmar: "It makes us right."
Tullius: "And if I surrender?"
Ulfric: "The Empire I remember never surrendered."
Galmar: "That Empire is dead. And so are you."
Tullius: "So be it."
Galmar: "Just kill him and let's be done with it already."
Ulfric: "Come, Galmar. Where's your sense of the dramatic moment?"
Galmar: "By the gods! If it's a good ending to some damn story you're after - perhaps the Dragonborn should be the one to do it."
Ulfric: "Good point."

Ulfric will then turn to the Dragonborn and ask if they would have the honor of killing Tullius:

"Well, Dragonborn. What do you say? Do you want the honor?"

I've had my fair share of killing today. "As you wish."
That honor belongs to you. "As you wish. This moment, we three, will be immortalized in song."
I'll gladly kill him. "Dragonborn. Here, use my sword to do it. This moment will be immortalized in song. Make it a good kill.

Regardless of which option is chosen, General Tullius will die.

Galmar: "Good. It's done."
Ulfric: "Well, I suppose some kind of speech is in order."
Galmar: "I'll go gather the men in the courtyard."
Ulfric: "And Elisif?"
Galmar: "Don't you worry about her. I've sent my best men to round her up."

If spoken any time after Tullius' death while still in Castle Dour, Ulfric will allow the Dragonborn to keep his sword, and ask if they want to be included in Ulfric's speech.

"Stormblade. I want you to have my sword, a token of my appreciation. Now then. The men will expect a speech. Will you stand by my side? I wish to honor you, Dragonborn, and the truest of Stormcloaks."

Of course, my Lord. "Very good. Come, the people await us."
Maybe you should leave me out of your speech. "Oh, why is that?"
Many have fought and died. I'm no different than they are. "On the contrary, you exceed the rest. But, I will honor your request. The gods know of your victories, and they themselves will glory in your deeds. Come, at the very least walk out with me."
I'm not sure this was all worth it, after all. "There's no shame in such thoughts. A man without doubts is a man without a conscience. But rest assured, We've won Skyrim's right to determine her own future. And for that, every Nord praises us. But I will heed your wishes. Come, at the very least walk out with me."
My reasons are my own. "A man's heart is his own burden to bear, so I will honor your request, though it casts a bit of gloom on an otherwise glorious day. Come, at the very least walk out with me."

Ulfric invites the Dragonborn to join him, while he addresses his people. Head outside, to find the Stormcloaks and Jarl Elisif gathered. Here, Ulfric will make his speech, to enthusiastic applause.

Galmar: "And now, I present to you, Ulfric Stormcloak, hero of the people, liberator and High King of Skyrim!"
Ulfric: "I am indeed Ulfric Stormcloak, and at my side the man/woman we know as Stormblade, and the world knows as the Dragonborn. (This will not be included in his speech if the Dragonborn requests that it does not.) And indeed, there are many that call us heroes. But it is all of you who are the true heroes! It was you who fought a dying Empire who sunk its claws into our land, trying to drag us down with it. It was you who fought the Thalmor and their puppets who would have us deny our gods and our heritage. It was you who fought your kin who didn't understand our cause, who weren't willing to pay the price of our freedom. But more than that, it was you who fought for Skyrim, for our right to fight our own battles... To return to our glory and traditions, to determine our own future!"
Soldiers: "[Cheering]"
Ulfric: "And it is for these reasons that I cannot accept the mantle of "High King." Not until the Moot declares that title should adorn my shoulders will I accept it."
Soldier: "And what about Jarl Elisif?"

Ulfric: "Yes, what about the Lady Elisif? Will she put aside her personal hatred for me, and her misplaced love for the Emperor and his coin, so that the suffering of our people will end? Will she acknowledge that it is we Nord's [sic] [Do not change this to
. This misspelled word is how it appears in-game.]
who will determine Skyrim's future? Will she swear fealty to me, so all may know that we are at peace, and a new day has dawned?"

Elisif: "I do!"
Ulfric: "Then it is settled. The Jarl will continue to rule Solitude, I will garrison armies here to ward off Imperial attempts to reclaim the city. And in due time, the Moot will meet, and settle the claim to High King once and for all. There is much to do, and I need every able bodied man and woman committed to rebuilding Skyrim. A great darkness is growing, and soon we will be called to fight it, on these shores or abroad. The Aldmeri Dominion may have defeated the Empire, but it has not defeated Skyrim!"
Soldiers: "[Cheering]"

And with his victory speech at last completed, Ulfric will then turn to Galmar for feedback on it:

Ulfric: "How'd I do?"
Galmar: "Eh, not so bad. Nice touch about the High King."
Ulfric: "Thank you, I thought so, too."
Galmar: "It's a foregone conclusion, you know."
Ulfric: "Oh, I know."
Galmar: "The Imperials aren't going to leave us alone. They still have camps in the hills. They'll continue to strike out at us, whenever and wherever they can."
Ulfric: "I'm not afraid of the remnants of the Legion, in time they'll all give up and go home. What I fear, is that the Thalmor will see our victory here and turn greater attention to our shores. We must be prepared to face them."
Galmar: "Aye."
Ulfric: "And of course, we couldn't have done it without you. May the gods preserve you." (Referring to the Dragonborn.)
Galmar: "May the gods preserve us all."
Ulfric: "Come, Galmar. We've still much work to do."


Battle for Solitude – CWSiegeObj
ID Journal Entry
1 I am to join Ulfric Stormcloak in the final attack on Solitude, putting an end to the Imperial Legion in Skyrim, once and for all.
  • Objective 1000: Get your Orders from Ulfric Stormcloak
  • Objective 4002: Force General Tullius to surrender
  • Objective 4102: Execute General Tullius
  • Quest failed
9000 We have captured Solitude, killed General Tullius, and destroyed the final bastion of Imperial influence in Skyrim.
  • Quest complete



  • This is the last Civil War quest for the Stormcloaks, as Solitude is now taken over. Once the quest is completed, the only places to find Imperial soldiers are their camps.
  • If you are currently in the middle of To Kill an Empire, Galmar Stone-Fist will tell you that the emperor is currently visiting Solitude (Skyrim) and they will bide their time until that quest is completed.


This section contains bugs related to Battle for Solitude. Before adding a bug to this list, consider the following:

  1. Please reload an old save to confirm if the bug is still happening.
  2. If the bug is still occurring, please post the bug report with the appropriate system template  360  /  XB1  ,  PS3  /  PS4  ,  PC  /  MAC  ,  NX  /  PS5  ,  XS  , depending on which platform(s) the bug has been encountered on.
  3. Be descriptive when listing the bug and fixes, but avoid having conversations in the description and/or using first-person anecdotes: such discussions belong on the appropriate forum board.
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Note: It is wise to create a separate save prior to entering Solitude, in the event where any of the following occur.

  •  PC   360   PS3   Upon entering the inside of Castle Dour, instead of a scripted confrontation between Ulfric and Rikke, the Dragonborn will enter to have his weapon forcibly sheathed. Neither Ulfric nor Galmar will spawn inside, making the quest impossible to continue.
  •  PC   360   PS3   Dragon Armor may cause the scripted confrontation to glitch. If prompted with "key required," one may be obtained from a Companion.
  •  PC   360   PS3   Some Penitus Oculatus Agents may be present during the battle. They may or may not be hostile, and the Dragonborn still gets the standard murder bounty if they are killed. Sometimes, their dead bodies remain on the ground, even after the quest is complete.
  •  PC   360   PS3   During the battle, Jaree-Ra may be present. He is listed as an essential character and cannot be killed. He may or may not be hostile toward the Dragonborn.
  •  PC   360   PS3   During the conversation with Legate Rikke, Legate Adventus Caesennius may become hostile and continue to attack the Dragonborn. He is listed as an essential character and cannot be killed. He will follow the Dragonborn and continue to attack after the execution of General Tullius and Jarl Ulfric's speech.
  •  360   PS3   After General Tullius dies and Ulfric asks if one would like to be a part of his speech, Ulfric and Galmar may freeze with their weapons drawn and they will not walk to the courtyard.
  •  PC   360   PS3   If the Dragonborn has a bounty from a previous engagement with the Solitude guards and pays the bounty, they will bypass the battle entirely. However, after the speech is done and one moves on to other quests, one may find Ulfric and his soldiers waiting outside Solitudes walls with nothing to fight. The door to the city will remain locked and the fast travel point deleted.
  •  PC   360   PS3   After Ulfric's speech before entering Solitude, the door may be locked and require a key. This can be fixed by confronting a guard of the hold and getting oneself put in jail. Once in jail, one can break out of jail and find their equipment. This requires the Dragonborn to pick an adept lock and an expert lock with one pick. Once this is done, pick the evidence chest to get the last items. Now the Dragonborn can head out to the castle area. Upon arrival, one can look to the left to see the general and his bodyguard. Kill them and the quest will be completed as if the Dragonborn helped to take the city.
  •  360   PS3   After the conversation between Ulfric, Galmar, and Rikke; Ulfric and Galmar sheath their weapons and become passive towards Rikke and General Tullius while Rikke herself remains an essential character, meaning that she cannot be killed. The result is that the quest becomes impossible to complete, and the Dragonborn is unable to leave Castle Dour due to all doors being locked and requiring a key to unlock. The PS3 bug differs slightly in that Ulfric and Galmar will have their weapons drawn but will not engage. Tullius becomes impossible to speak with, thus preventing the quest's end. Rikke also returns to her post at the room's forward door.
  •  360   If the main questline is incomplete, finish it entirely. Then, take the orders from Galmar Stone-Fist normally. It should fix the battle among Rikkie, Ulfric and Galmar at the end of the quest.
  •  PC   After completing the quest, and after Ulfric's speech, Solitude and the Blue Palace may disappear from the map, and fast travel to it is not possible any more. The Blue Palace will also get an expert lock that can be picked. (Confirmed fixed on PC by going to Windhelm and waiting a few days.)
  •  PC   360   PS3   One's follower may disappear when entering the city. They may or may not respond after one leaves Castle Dour (after General Tullius has been killed).
  •  PC   360   After the completion of this quest, the Blue Palace in Solitude may remain locked, as it was during the battle. One can either use the console command unlock by clicking on the entrance door then typing in the code, or they might try unlocking it either via lockpicking or via magic.
  •  360   Both Whiterun and Solitude may remain blocked off and wrecked, even after the questline.
  •  PC   360   PS3   After Ulfric's speech, the Stormcloaks will not enter the city, rendering the quest unplayable.
  •  PC   360   PS3   When inside Solitude the barricade to the second and third areas of the battle may be unbreakable, this can be fixed by pressing the ~ key, clicking the barricade, and typing disable.
  •  PC   360   PS3   After liberating Solitude, Elisif may disappear from the game entirely and the Stormcloak guard replacements may never spawn, leaving the city virtually defenseless.
  •  PS3   If General Tullius is attacked during the conversation with Rikke and Ulfric he will fight with the Dragonborn and the rest of and when the Stormcloaks. When he is defeated, may act essential and be unhittable on the ground. If the Dragonborn chooses to kill Tullius himself, he cannot be killed. The way to bypass this bug is to use healing hands on Tullius which will kill him.
  •  PC   If Ulfric uses Unrelenting Force on Tullius during the battle, he may become paralyzed and may not get up. He will still speak, but he will stay lying on the ground for the remainder of the time in Castle Dour.
  •  PC   360   PS3   If the Blue Palace is entered during the battle, Bolgeir Bearclaw will have his weapon drawn and Elisif the Fair will be in her quarters, unable to be spoken to.
  •  NX   During Ulfric's victory speech, the Stormcloak Soldiers may spawn multiple times more than they are supposed to, leading to a large group of soldiers permanently standing around in the courtyard.