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Skyrim:Battle for Whiterun (Stormcloaks)

< Skyrim: Quests: Stormcloaks
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Walkthrough: written by Eddie the head, not checked
Reward: written by multiple users, not checked
Take Whiterun in the name of the Stormcloaks.
Quest Giver: Ulfric Stormcloak
Location(s): Windhelm, Whiterun
Prerequisite Quest: Message to Whiterun
Next Quest: Liberation of Skyrim
Reward: Leveled enchanted weapon; title of "Ice-Veins"
ID: CWSiegeObj
The Stormcloaks begin their advance on the city of Whiterun.

Quick WalkthroughEdit

  1. Get your orders from Ulfric.
  2. Meet the Stormcloaks preparing for the attack.
  3. Storm Whiterun.
  4. Defeat Jarl Balgruuf the Greater.

Detailed WalkthroughEdit

Making it to the GatesEdit

The Whiterun guard have stationed themselves atop the walls in order to defend the city...

After finishing the previous quest, Jarl Ulfric Stormcloak will tell you that you are going to help take Whiterun. Report to Galmar Stone-Fist for orders, who will direct you to meet him outside the city.

At this point, the Whiterun and Dragonsreach icons will disappear from the map and the city will not be reachable via fast travel for the duration of this quest, even if a house is owned or if you have a spouse in Whiterun. Only the surroundings of the city can be reached via fast travel, or you can use a Carriage from Windhelm to get there by asking Alfarinn, it will cost you 20 gold, however if you choose this option.

Head to the Whiterun Military Camp, southwest of Whiterun, and you will notice that the besieging of Whiterun has already begun. Head to where Galmar is briefing the men on the attack and listen in. He will say your destination is the drawbridge that has been raised to keep the attackers out.

Once the rallying of the troops is done, charge in with Galmar and the troops. Don't worry too much about killing all the Imperials, as more spawn. When you reach the first set of wooden barricades is also when you meet the first enemies. Breaking through the barricades is easy. Hit them a few times with a weapon and they break. Your journal will then tell you to lower the drawbridge. Move up the path to the small wooden bridge with the stone walls to your side, head up there, and go up the walkway. You will see two drawbridge levers over the drawbridge. Pull one. The bridge will fall, and the soldiers will run into the city.

Inside the CityEdit

...which is quickly overwhelmed by the Stormcloaks.

Head into the city. Your destination now is Dragonsreach (It may be safer to stay with Galmar and the soldiers). Several barriers block the entrance to the plains district, which are destroyed after 3 blows from any weapon (power attacks make no difference). Upon entering Dragonsreach, three soldiers will charge at you, but they will die easily. Continue up the stairs, where Balgruuf will shout about not letting you take the city without fighting back. Then he, three guards, and his Housecarl, Irileth, will attack you. Kill the soldiers. After the jarl is reduced to 25% health, he will stop the fight and surrender.

Vignar Gray-Mane will approach the jarl and they will have a short conversation. Galmar will stop the conversation after a while, Vignar will walk off after a few more words and Balgruuf will address you for a minute. With Balgruuf stepping down, Vignar takes the throne as the new Jarl of Whiterun. The quest will end there and the next quest, Liberation of Skyrim, will begin.

When you return to Ulfric Stormcloak in Windhelm, he commends you for the victory and rewards you with an enchanted leveled weapon and gives you the title "Ice-Veins".


  • The Whiterun Guards faced in this battle are significantly lower level than those normally patrolling the city.
  • Bodies will quite often disappear during this quest - this is intentional to reduce lag and is not a bug.
  • After the battle, if you have an outstanding bounty in the Whiterun Hold, it will be erased.
  • This quest, Battle for Whiterun (Imperial), Battle for Solitude, and Battle for Windhelm are all different radiant versions of the same quest.
  • From here on, Stormcloak Soldiers will take over as guards of the Whiterun Hold, though Whiterun Guards will continue to patrol Riverwood. Whether this is intentional or not is unknown.
  • Taking the carriage directly to Whiterun automatically skips the objective to "Break through the Enemy Barricade".
  • After getting your orders at the Whiterun Military camp, you can head straight to Windhelm. The battle will be won in your absence, but Ulfric Stormcloak will be disappointed that you ran away.
  • Severio Pelagia dies at the beginning of this quest.
  • If LuciaHF has been adopted, she will be transferred to the Bannered Mare until after the battle is over. This happens because her editor location is there and CWCitizensFlee will pick her up in one of the aliases.
  • The Bannered Mare will have a barricade across the main entrance and both doors will be expert locked, however if you pick the lock, both Hulda and Saadia will have their normal speech options, welcoming you and are willing to trade.
  • Breezehome becomes locked again, key required.
  • Honningbrew Meadery is apprentice locked during this battle, however if you pick the lock Sabjorn will be back in charge with both him and Mallus Maccius telling you to get out and treating you as if they don't know you. You are unable to trade with either of them.
  • You will be unable to enter Jorrvaskr during or after the battle as all the doors require a key.
  • Unused files suggest Jarl Balgruuf the Greater was intended to flee the battle through a secret passage located behind the throne rather than stay and fight.
  • Stealing items causes a bounty to be applied to Eastmarch rather than Whiterun.
  • After this quest Fort Greymoor will be garrisoned by Stormcloak rebels. Additionally, Whiterun Imperial Camp will finally be set up, though the soldiers there will be hostile.


  • After defeating the Jarl and getting him to surrender, the quest pointer may continue to point to him, but no interaction is possible and the quest does not update.
    • Striking the Jarl and then paying off the bounty may fix this.
    • Using Unrelenting Force to knock down both Vignar Gray-Mane and Balgruuf at the same time may also fix this.
  • The doors to Jorrvaskr and the Underforge will become locked during this mission, and may not unlock after it's completed. Since the doors require an unavailable key, this renders the buildings (as well as the Companions inside) inaccessible to you.
    •   You can unlock the doors using the unlock console command.
    • Fast-traveling to any town then back to Whiterun may resolve the issue.
  • You may not be able to break barricades as a werewolf.
  • Aela the Huntress may disappear if she is your wife at the time. She may come back eventually after you have moved on to the next quest, Liberation of Skyrim.
  • The Stormcloak soldiers might attack your follower(s). It is advised to order any followers to wait outside the gates before entering. ? [verification needed — Needs testing to determine if this is due to a bug or something else]
  • Receiving the quest update "force Jarl Balgruuf the Greater to surrender" may cause the game to crash upon entering Whiterun or, if the city is entered beforehand, the game may crash immediately upon receiving it.
  • Killing Whiterun guards instead of Imperial soldiers will incur a bounty, though it will be removed after the battle.
  • Entering Chillfurrow Farm or Pelagia Farm during this quest may end it prematurely.
  • Upon entering Whiterun, there may be no Imperial soldiers and you may be unable to get Balgruuf to surrender.
  • Ulfric may not give you any orders before the battle, which will prevent the quest from progressing.
  • Upon completion of the quest when you are asked to return to Ulfric, it may not let you continue, and the normal dialogue will appear. In addition, the fast-travel markers will be disabled and the battle music may still be running.
    • If not in or near Whiterun, fast-travel to Pelagia Farm and walk into the city from there.
    • If the battle music is still running, go to Dragonsreach and wait until it completes. The completion of the battle music also completes the Battle for Whiterun quest properly and solves most issues with the Civil War questline.
    • If Whiterun's markers are still disabled, walk back out of the city gates, following the path towards the stables until the markers reappear.
    • Travelling to the Stormcloak camp outside of Whiterun may also resolve the issue.
    • Ralof may be running on the spot in the camp, downing him and reloading the save fixes this issue.

Quest StagesEdit

Only the quest stages and objectives that are possibly relevant to this radiant version of the quest are shown.

Battle for Whiterun (CWSiegeObj)
Stage Finishes Quest Journal Entry
1 Ulfric Stormcloak has ordered me to join Galmar Stone-Fist in taking the city of Whiterun.
8999 Fails quest 
9000 Finishes quest  We have taken the city of Whiterun. Proving the righteousness of our cause and the fierceness of our warriors.[verification needed — Does this display? Looks like it shouldn't in the CK.]
Objective 1000: Get your Orders from Galmar Stone-Fist
Objective 1005: Break through the Enemy Barricade
Objective 1015: Follow Galmar Stone-Fist
Objective 1020: Open the Exterior Gate
Objective 1030: Open the Drawbridge
Objective 1050: Enter Whiterun
Objective 1060: Break through the First Barricade
Objective 1070: Break through the Second Barricade
Objective 1080: Break through the Final Barricade
Objective 1200: Force Jarl Balgruuf the Greater to surrender
Objective 1210: Accept Jarl Balgruuf the Greater's surrender
  • The following empty quest stages were omitted from the table: 9999.
  • Any text displayed in angle brackets (e.g., <Alias=LocationHold>) is dynamically set by the Radiant Quest system, and will be filled in with the appropriate word(s) when seen in game.
  • Not all Journal Entries may appear in your journal; which entries appear and which entries do not depends on the manner in which the quest is done.
  • Stages are not always in order of progress. This is usually the case with quests that have multiple possible outcomes or quests where certain tasks may be done in any order. Some stages may therefore repeat objectives seen in other stages.
  • If an entry is marked as "Finishes Quest" it means the quest disappears from the Active Quest list, but you may still receive new entries for that quest.
  • On the PC, it is possible to use the console to advance through the quest by entering setstage CWSiegeObj stage, where stage is the number of the stage you wish to complete. It is not possible to un-complete (i.e. go back) quest stages, but it is possible to clear all stages of the quest using resetquest CWSiegeObj.