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In Skyrim, there are two very likely candidates for the next High King or Queen after Torygg is murdered.

In the main story line, when you defeat the Empire as the Stormcloaks:

Ulfric rescinds his earlier statement, saying he supports the decision of the Moot, whether he is crowned King or not.

Which means Ulfric may or may not be crowned High King of Skyrim. I can't seem to find any information about Elisif becoming High Queen.

In the end, who becomes the true ruler of Skyrim? The player can choose for themselves who may become the king or queen, but is there any hard-wired true ending in the lore of The Elder Scrolls?

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    Unfortunately, I am the high king of Skyrim. – Studoku Dec 1 '14 at 10:50
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    We probably won't have a canonical answer until Elder Scrolls 6 – Alex Dec 1 '14 at 12:11
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    The canonical answer will probably : Both Ulric and Elesif. Iirc, the canon of ES is a bit mutable. Esp when players influence the outcome of the events. – Ids Dec 1 '14 at 13:25
  • Ah yes...due to causality being wibbly-wobbly timey-wimey stuff and all that. – Alex Dec 1 '14 at 14:25
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Ruling out any Mods, the answer is unknown. Even after the player ends the Civil War there is no way to cause a meeting of the Moot. Without the Moot, there is no TRUE High King. Both Elisef and Ulfric point out that without the Moot's decision, there is no King. Of course, part of the reason for the Civil War is to put Jarls friendly to your cause in charge of the various Holds.

Logically speaking, if the player sides with the Empire and wins the Civil War, Jarl Elisef will almost certainly win the election and be named High Queen. If Ulfric wins the Civil War, he likewise is nearly guaranteed to win the election. But again, the Moot does not occur within the time-span of the game, so officially there is no High King. Because Skyrim is currently the last entry in the series chronologically there is no lore to tell us what happens after it ends.

  • Ok then. So at the moment, there is no official answer. Thanks. – user92092 Dec 1 '14 at 19:59
  • @FinnRayment And there may never be. (In)famously, the answer to a similar question regarding the ending of Daggerfall is everyone won the war, even though that's impossible, because Bethsoft wanted no-one's experience playing Daggerfall to be contradicted by later lore. They are very likely to do something similar with the High King of Skyrim when the next game comes out. – SevenSidedDie Dec 1 '14 at 22:53
  • @SevenSidedDie But there are games based after Daggerfall so did they ever find out? (Just curious to what Bethesda did) – user92092 Dec 2 '14 at 4:40
  • @FinnRayment (Hint: click that link!) – SevenSidedDie Dec 2 '14 at 5:27
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    @FinnRayment They never answered who "won" the conflict in Daggerfall, and will never answer it. They wrote into the lore of later games that a magical event happened that somehow made every ending a player could get in Daggerfall actually happened in-universe. The in-game book The Warp in the West was added to Oblivion making the "all possible Daggerfall endings became true" part of official game lore for future games. So that's the precedent that this answer and some comments are referencing when they say that it may never be answered, or both might become High King. – SevenSidedDie Dec 2 '14 at 6:08

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