The Battle of Kuantan; Chain of Command Solo AAR

With the Partizan show not running this year due to the UK lockdown they switched to hosting various online games and videos. As part of it, I played a solo game of Chain of Command throughout the day whilst tweeting pictures as the action developed. I also filmed the game and the video can be seen below. I also played this game in cause of charity that I work with, Breaking Ground Heritage. BGH provide veterans a pathway to recovery from mental health and physical combat injuries through archaeology. You can read more about them and drop them a few quid on their Just Giving page HERE.

The game was based on the action during the fighting at Kuantan on the east coast of the Malayan peninsular in January 1942. The Garhwali Rifles were surrounded by elements of the 55th Japanese Infantry regiment and Lt Col Cumming led a group of around forty men through Japanese road blocks to join the rest of 22nd Brigade. Cumming would win a VC for his part in the action.

The table for the Battle of Kuantan

As a Chain of Command game this was a perfect scenario to play. The Indians would attempt to get as many units off the end of the table before their morale collapsed. The Japanese would appear on the table when their command dice allowed for them to activate and at a random Jumping Off Point, this would give me a bit of fog of war. 

Looking down the long road ahead

Taking their chance the Indians tried to get as far down the road as possible immediately.  

The Indian troops move out

But a Japanese section appeared and began making their way through the jungle...

Japanese infantry move from their ambush positions

Another section took up positions at the far end of the table, waiting in ambush.

Another Japanese section takes up their positions

And a Japanese MMG nest revealed itself!

The Indians take fire from an MMG

The MMG opened up on the Garhwalis on the road, causing casualties and shock.

The MMG fire holds the Indians in place

As the Indians pushed on a Japanese LMG appeared in ambush on the edge of the jungle.

A LMG team ambushes from the edge of the jungle

As the Garhwalis advanced they took fire on both flanks from the MMG and one of the Japanese infantry sections. 

The Indians gradually move past the MMG

They fired back into the jungle causing some casualties on the Japanese.

A firefight breaks out in the jungle

But more fire from the MMG broke one of the Indian sections and they retreated back down the road.

The MMG causes an Indian section to retreat

Another Japanese infantry section broke cover on the jungle's edge.

Japanese rifle men fire on the Indians

The Japanese infantry attacked in a close assault!

And forced the Indians to skirt around them.

Lt Col Cumming pushes the Indians to advance

Meanwhile, one section had rushed towards the end of the table and were within striking distance of exiting.

An Indian section makes it close to the end of the road

In the centre, things were getting bogged down under Japanese fire

The Japanese infantry close assault

Lt Col Cumming was hit by fire from the MMG as casualties mounted all around him!

Cumming is hit by Japanese fire

The Indian force morale collapsed and it was game over...

The Indian morale collapses and they surrender

The game ended with the Indians' morale falling to zero after two junior leaders were killed along with Cumming being injured by Japanese fire. They managed to get one section off the edge of the board, but the remaining troops were rounded up by the Japanese. The Indians had managed to get about half way across the board, in hindsight, they were caught up with fighting the Japanese infantry and should have pushed on regardless of the casualties, rather than standing and fighting. 

Although it wasn't a historical outcome the game was very enjoyable and I liked the random deployment that I used for the Japanese as they came onto the board. This is something I will use again in future Chain of Command games as it adds a bit of friction as a solo player. 


  1. Looks good- will watch the vid after tea tonight.




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