Both parliamentary and state seats are up for grabs in Malaysia's May 9 general election, with parties vying to control the federal government and 12 of 13 state assemblies.
Sarawak's state seats will not be contested as it held its state election in 2016.
Three states - Kelantan, Penang and Selangor - are held by federal opposition parties. While the four-party Pakatan Harapan (PH) alliance is expected to retain Penang, ruling coalition Barisan Nasional (BN) will pitch fierce fights for Selangor, the other state administered by PH.
Umno-led BN is also expected to mount a strong fight in Kelantan, which has been governed by Parti Islam SeMalaysia (PAS) for the last 28 years.
Meanwhile, the federal opposition parties plan to launch attacks on BN-ruled states of Johor, Kedah and Sabah.
The Straits Times Foreign Editor Zakir Hussain and Malaysia Bureau Chief Shannon Teoh look at these key battleground states and the issues facing the candidates and voters.