from the MGDG website: Early in the 16th Century, an accident of inheritance joined the Low Countries to the sprawling Habsburg Empire. The local governments disliked threats to their traditions of self-rule, and heavy taxes to support foreign wars. At the same time the Protestant Reformation, which was sweeping Europe, found ready acceptance among the affluent, literate Dutch. There was little enough to bind the independent-minded Dutch to the distant Habsburg possessions in Spain and Austria, but the devout Catholicism of the Emperors and their Inquisition now made war inevitable. When the rebellion commenced in 1566, neither side foresaw either the decades of bloody civil war or the formation of an independent Dutch State. The Dutch Revolt is a simulation of this conflict. One player commands the Catholic forces of the Habsburg Empire under King Philip II of Spain. The other player commands the Dutch Protestant forces under William of Orange.