This discussion will cover the new Imperial racial passives, particularly Red Diamond.
When I first came upon the new racial, I felt my heart sank. It just looks overall underwhelming and seems not as unique as the previous edition. Imperial now looks more like a gimped Redguard with a bit of magicka sustain attached to it and a very weak heal in PvP. If it had a higher resource return or a lower CD, it wouldn't be as bad. However, it still wouldn't fix the fact it is not quite as unique. I went to a handful of friends who play Imperial on various different classes and they all just felt like this was a pretty hard nerf to them. The previous Red Diamond from last week's PTS actually looked great to them. It said precisely, "Reduces the cost of your Block and Bash abilities by 5%. When you deal direct damage you have a 15% chance to heal yourself for 1,750." It is evident that it was more appealing to tanks and ZOS wanted to take a more sustain role to be more DPS friendly. After a bit of pondering, I felt like the best way to make Imperial a fun race is to set Red Diamond up precisely as this:
Red Diamond: Reduces the cost of all your abilities by 5%. When you deal direct damage you have a 15% chance to heal yourself for 1,750.
Essentially, an Alteration Mastery in a racial. This would feel quite unique and be a passive that would allow for both survivability and sustain. All skills are affected by this reduced cost and when you add up the numbers mitigated from ability costs, this helps quite a bit with sustain. DPS spammables will be cheaper allowing their low recoveries to catch up and keep in pace, helping overall sustain. The passive healing will allow all styles an offensive option for healing so when they receive pressure they can take a beating and try returning their own. This is what direction ZOS felt like would be a good direction last PTS.
For lore, this passive I feel makes a lot of sense. Imperials are divided into two cultures the Nibenese and the Colovians. This proposition for the Red Diamond passive underlines Imperial proficiency as mages (Tends to be the Nibenese) and warriors (the Colovians) as well as their overall cosmopolitan nature. In previous Elder Scrolls, Imperials always have been the Jack-of-All-Trades race.