One thing that surprised me here: I commented on empire and Stormcloaks, and people were very one-sided in the discussion. "The empire needs to win in order to fight Aldmeri" – NOPE! Another obvious solution:
Each province should be autonomous, without an empire commanding the region. They should be independent and fight together against Aldmeri, and we have examples of this in our world: independent nations coming together to fight against a greater evil.
Hammerfell is already independent.
Black Marsh too.
Morrowind … well, most of it was destroyed during the "red year", so it wouldn't be very useful.
Skyrim may or may not become independent, let's see what the future holds.
High Rock still belongs to the empire, but if Skyrim becomes independent, I honestly don't see how the empire will be able to maintain control of that province. To get to High Rock you have to go through Hammerfell or Skyrim, if the stormcloaks have won, they will probably leave the Imperials' passage through the region very difficult, hammerfell may even be a little more "quiet" with this issue, but it would be something complicated too.
Valenwood, Elsweyr and Summerset isle are from the enemy team
The question of the independence of nations is an important point, because we are going to be realistic: IF the empire won the civil war and regained control of Skyrim, now will the Nordics serve the empire willingly? of course not
"But then the empire will explain that they are doing this to terrorize the Aldmeri, and after that, hidden from Talos, he can be released again in Skyrim"
The question is in the confidence that has been lost, not only with Skyrim, but also with Hammerfell itself. Both nations have reasons to feel betrayed and resentful, the issue here is more of a thing of pride and resentment, there is no denying that the empire has failed with both regions. Expect the Nordics to simply think "Okay, we lost. Let's join the empire once more to fight the Aldmeri. If we win the Talos cult back and everything will be resolved"
This is not how things work. The Empire promised to take care of the conquered regions, but in the peace treaty it gave way to the Aldmeri, Talos cultists were killed by thalmors in Skyrim for being praying in front of a Talos altar (this appears in the game), the empire has already failed with these people and may well fail again. And Hammerfell? It had to accept its lands being taken "legitimately" by the aldmeri, because the empire failed.
The empire currently relies on itself (Cyrodiil. But it’s interesting to note that the empire is struggling internally, as described in Ciro’s diaries as two imperial cities fell relatively easily), High Rock and perhaps Skyrim (even if it was regained, the Nordics would hardly fight willingly. And another point, after 25 years of civil war, Skyrim is in a very bad time, it would take a long time for the region to "bear good fruit" again).
aldmeri is currently not at a much lower level than it was in the first war, the regions that are part of the organization are doing relatively well. Not so much on the empire side.
It would be necessary to ally with Hammerfell who is now independent, if possible to ally with Black Marsh, try to regain the Nordic's confidence (which would be difficult) and use all the strength that High Rock can offer.
Black Marsh and Hammerfell will not go back under the empire, the Norse will not give in, even if they lose the civil war (even more so considering that many people continue to worship Talos in secret), so … it is easier for the empire to focus on revitalize its base (Cyrodiil) and try to establish a relationship of partnership and not domination with other regions.
The provinces independently would be more motivated to fight and if one smooth fall another one can still fight, not everything would depend only on the empire.
The power concentrated in a single point is strong (the empire controlling all the provinces), but when the structure that contains all the power is shaken, everything else suffers (empire losing and thus negatively affecting all its provinces), now the power well distributed (independent provinces, where one of them falls the others can still fight, each region with its own generals and soldiers, non-standardized and not all within the same empire, following the same model) can be more effective, with soldiers fighting with more ferocity, because they would be fighting especially for their region (obviously fighting for all the provinces should be more intense than fighting for yours alone, but the issue here is the emotional factor. Who from Hammerfell will be motivated to fight mainly for freedom land, without strong links with other regions).
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