In the 21st century reimagining of the original continuity by Dreamwave Productions, Optimus Prime started life as a data archivist known as Optronix, or Orion to his friends. After taking note of a battle where the Autobot leader Sentinel Prime had been killed by Megatron, he was summoned to the Council of Elders and informed that the Matrix had chosen him to be the next leader of the Autobots. He received the Matrix of Leadership shortly thereafter, and arranged for the Autobot evacuation of Cybertron. He intended to leave the Decepticons to their own devices, but a battle with Megatron beneath the planet's surface, accompanied by visions from the Matrix, stirred him on to fight for the safety of his homeworld.
Toymaker Fischer Price was the knight in shining armor on this one with the creation of their Power Wheels line. At first, Power Wheels vehicles were very basic with small electric motors and rudimentary Jeep-like styling. Now, Fischer Price has unleashed a car that says "When I grow up, I want to be too rich to care about the environment." This giant bastard comes with tinted windows, a set of dubs and even a fully functional FM transmitter which, no doubt, blasts shitty radio static through its real-live rear subwoofers.
This sculpt was redecoed by Takara into a golden Lucky Draw figure and later released in its original coloration with a trailer as a "Perfect Edition" (see below for both), while Hasbro would later redeco it into their Classics-branded "DVD Edition". The mold was also used to make Masterpiece Ultra Magnus and "Convoy Black Version", representing one of many drones built in Prime's image, rather than Prime himself.
With the data from the piece price evaluations I was able to also evaluate the average size of LEGO sets each year. As you can see on the chart below, the average size of sets released each year stayed somewhat constant from 1980-1990 until around 2000 which set sizes started to increase. The average set size seems to have peaked in 2008 (which saw the release of the Taj Mahal), but since then it hasn’t fallen to its pre-2000 levels. It seems to have found a new normal around 300 pieces.
Late in 2008, this version of Optimus prime was one of four Classics figures repainted into HasbroToyShop.com exclusives (the other three being the Megatron from this set in G1 colors, Grimlock repainted into Overkill, and Mirage repainted into Dragstrip). Unlike those three, it's debatable just how much repainting went into Optimus, but he comes in a snazzy new box.
The Premium Series Optimus Prime is both a retool and a redeco of the Leader Class Optimus Prime toy. The major selling point is a more movie-accurate headsculpt with longer ears and detailing based on the final CG head design, and a flip-out energy sword to replace the ion blaster that was included with previous versions of the toy. A smaller laser is seen when it flips out with the sword. This energy sword is detachable and attaches where the Ion Blaster did, compatible with non-premium Optimus Prime leader class based releases. Because his ears are much longer, the truck roof panel that hides his head now has two holes cut into so the head can fit inside the cabin.
This Cybertron spin pop consists of a generic handle with an Optimus Prime sticker, topped with a figurine of Prime through which the included lollipop slots. When the handle is squeezed, a manual gear mechanism spins both the figure and lollipop—no batteries necessary! The handle was also redecoed in orange for a Megatron spin pop, with a figure of the Decepticon leader on top.
Originally, the Alternators Dodge Ram mold was intended by Hasbro to be a completely different character altogether than Optimus Prime (which character is unknown), but Takara reportedly demanded the Ram be made into Optimus out of fear that the toy (whose vehicle mode is scarce in Japan as a real vehicle) wouldn't sell as well in their market if it wasn't a popular and easily recognized figure; as the figure reportedly cost twice as much to build as the others, Hasbro had to agree in order for Takara to continue fronting part of the production cost. In an ironic turn of events, the Dodge Ram was prematurely solicited by Takara not as "Convoy" (Optimus Prime), but as his Masterforce look-alike Ginrai. As a matter of fact, the head sculpt for the Alternators Oprimus Prime toy is based on the Super Ginrai (Powermaster Optimus Prime's "super mode") toy's head sculpt. Ultimately, however, Ginrai was cancelled, with only Hasbro releasing Optimus Prime as originally planned. Eventually, Takara released the Dodge Ram as as part of the new Kiss Players line, now named "Convoy" (Optimus Prime), and he will be released in Binaltech this year.
The morning after a particularly vicious battle, Optimus listened to birdsong and pondered life as a giant robot, before asking Ratchet and Huffer for a damage report. The Autobots were puzzled when the Decepticon Seekers (and Laserbeak and Buzzsaw) did a flyby on their camp, as the Decepticons were similarly damaged after the battle, but Shooting Star reported that the Decepticons were trying to distract them while an attempt was made to secure a broken-down oil truck a few miles away. Optimus took a small group to investigate, and successfully aided the humans in getting their truck moving. Swoop was instrumental in stopping the Decepticon attack, and Optimus commended the Dinobot for his valor. Decepticon Hijack
When reports from both Jetfire and Mirage corroborated that the Decepticons were constructing giant rockets to shift Earth out of its orbit, Optimus took to the skies and led his troops on a sabotage mission. Upon their approach, Optimus, Jetfire, and Deftwing overheard Megatron declare that the engines would fire up in twenty minutes. With little time to prevent the destruction of Earth's biosphere, the more maneuverable air-bound Autobots entered the thruster tubes to destroy the rockets from within. Jetfire and Deftwing were successful in their task, and the Autobots beat a hasty retreat to avoid the resulting lava swell. Optimus heaped praise upon the pair afterwards, embarrassing the bashful Jetfire. Moving Day Planet Earth
Part of the first wave of Prime: Beast Hunters Series 3 Cyberverse Commander Class toys, Optimus Prime is an all-new mold. He now transforms into a monstrous, flat-nosed truck with spiky fenders at the front and a cage compartment at the back, and comes with the Thunder Lance and Star Saber. Each of the weapons features two differently-placed 3mm posts, allowing them to be held by his hands, or mount onto two ports on the rear vehicle sides, as well as allowing the lance to additionally be used as a pressure-fired missile launcher.
The Autobots and the Decepticons came to a distant world in the grip of an ice age. Assuming alternate modes based upon the dominant (though doomed) indigenous creatures of this planet, they continued their ancient, unending war. However, the Autobots, with their energy levels dangerously low, withdrew from combat as the world grew colder. They sought refuge in a deep cavern and entered stasis lock, awaiting the day when surface conditions changed to better suit their operation. Hearts of Steel #1 Optimus lay under the Mare Rurek Glacier. Infestation 2: The Transformers #1 Millions of years later, Bumblebee was awoken by the hammering of humans working on a rail line. He briefly considered awakening Optimus Prime, but thought better of it. After discovering the world had changed significantly, Ratchet thought there was no reason to awaken Prime. Hearts of Steel #1 When Bumblebee discovered the Decepticons were once again active on this world, Ratchet and Prowl agreed that the Autobots must intervene, but again decided out of rousing Optimus from his slumber. Hearts of Steel #2
Armada Built to Rule Optimus Prime transforms into a fair approximation of his vehicle mode, but the robot mode is quite inaccurate, due to the very broad, flat Trans-Skeleton with thin, stick-like limbs attached to it. The set came with a very simplistic "Mini-Con" Sparkplug partner kit that did have a more dedicated "Powerlinx" connector than the standard construction pegs, though these are a bit too thin to be used as attachment points for regular Mini-Cons (they stay, sort of, but it's a very loose connection). The 101-piece set also features pressure-launch missile-firing "smokestack" cannons.
Hero Optimus Prime was the first new-mold Optimus Prime toy created for the Generation 2 line. He transforms into a Kenworth truck of unknown model which defies Optimus convention by being one continuous unit, rather than the traditional cab-and-trailer combo. Decals form the windows of a faux truck face to represent his chest, featuring both his name and what appears to be a life support readout coming alive towards the end. In addition to a small gun, he is armed with a large missile launcher, which can fire a rubber-tipped rocket by means of a bellows which you slam your fist down on to produce a puff of air. The launcher is accessible in both modes, ending up mounted on his right forearm in robot mode; the bellows is attached via a rubber hose and cannot be disconnected, but stores on the figures's back when not in use, as do the rockets. A similar air-launching system with identical missiles was used by the simultaneously-released Hero Megatron, and by Laser Optimus Prime the following year (see below).
Available only at Kay-Bee toys (well, at first), Machine Wars Optimus Prime is a redeco and slight modification of the European Generation One exclusive Turbomaster leader Thunder Clash, transforming into a Cybertronic truck cab. It also lacks the mouthplate, revealing the mouth. The trailer unit unfolds to become a missile-launching assault tower. The tower's gravity-feed missile launchers were retooled to accommodate the new, longer spring-loaded missiles in lieu of the much smaller original projectiles due to projectile choke-gate safety testing.
Megatron came upon Optimus and challenged his old foe to a duel. Optimus managed to gain the upper hand, but hesitated to deliver the killing blow when he discovered that Megatron had married the Matrix to his spark, corrupting it. Several Decepticons then swarmed Optimus, allowing Megatron to blast a hole through his chest. Dead and defeated, Optimus plummeted down into the bowels of Cybertron. Pax Megatronus Rodimus and Duke travelled far beneath Cybertron, where they discovered Ultra Magnus- the Autobot god of death -carrying Optimus's body away. Earth: R.I.P.
Optimus Prime and his troops lay deactivated on the Fera Islands for three million years until G.I. Joe stumbled upon them one day in 1939. The Line The Autobots were reactivated by a repair drone and given new disguises, with Optimus Prime being reformatted into an unknown World War II-era human vehicle. He explained to Duke who they were, and learned that Megatron's Decepticons had been reactivated a year prior, and were currently wreaking havoc on Europe along with Cobra. While hesitant at first, Optimus Prime soon joined G.I. Joe in their mission to destroy Cobra and the Decepticons. Transformed After commanding the Aerialbots to get the Seekers out of the way, Prime advanced across the Fera Islands, but met resistance in the form of Rumble. Trial by Fire
This is a redeco of the 2004 20th Anniversary Optimus Prime, released to coincide with the 20th Anniversary of the original Transformers animated movie and DVD release. He is painted in flatter, non-metallic colours to more closely resemble the original cartoon model, as well as the Voyager-class Classics Optimus Prime figure. The color of the light of his feet has changed too. As a cost-cutting measure, all vacuum-metalized plastic has been replaced with with silver and gold paint. Confusingly, his Ion blaster is now cast in blue plastic.
Instead of his trailer, Prime can alternately combine with Armada Jetfire, who forms a pair of legs, as "Jet Prime" (Jet Optimus on the cartoon, or "Jet Convoy" if you own the Japanese version). In addition to this, Armada Overload can form a pair of massive cannons that attach to either Prime's base mode, or mount over the shoulders of his super robot torso (with either his trailer or Jetfire as legs), forming Optimus Prime Megaweapon (or Magna Convoy).
Being a brand new and intricate remake of the Autobot leader, MP-10 was used as the gold standard in terms of scale for future Masterpiece figures, with all the upcoming releases being sized to best match him. Much like his older incarnation, he was also cherished by collectors, generating heated debates on which version is the best one up to this day.
French die-cast model producers Majorette teamed with Kabaya to produce the Transformers Mini Car Collection, a line of Armada-themed die-cast vehicles, all of which were redecos of pre-existing Majorette toys. Prime was a redeco of Majorette toy #256—a long-nosed tow truck—in his traditional red and blue, now bearing the Autobot insignia, the Micron Legend logo, and an image of the Autobot leader on its hood. The toy came with a pack of gum.
Having launched a painstaking review of each of those 14,200 pieces in the LEGO universe, the Design Lab found that 90 percent of new elements were developed and used just once. And many components were duplicates. Among the dupes were eight minifig police officers and six minifig chefs, with barely decipherable differences between them. The Lab dealt with the redundancies by slashing the total number of components by more than 50 percent. When it reduced the product portfolio’s minifig chef population from six to one, designers protested and longtime fans howled. To calm the fans, LEGO tried humor: it held a mock online memorial service for the “dead chefs.”
Yet another Reveal the Shield redeco with the Motorbreath retooling, Convoy is cast in clear red and black plastic. He has been retooled to include a magnet in his right foot, allowing him to interact with Lost Age Battle Command Optimus Prime and Age of Extinction Stomp & Chomp Grimlock. Convoy was available at a variety of 2014 events, including on May 3 at a "Kids Walk" event at Fuji Speedway, in special packaging on May 16 at the "Transformers Celebration 2014" midnight event at the Sunshine City Toys"R"Us store in Ikebukuro, on June 15 at Tokyo Toy Show 2014, at the Aeon Mall in Kasukabe on July 19, and at the "Transformers Expo" event in Yokohama on August 9. Convoy was also available as one of three preorder bonuses for Cloud Roadbuster.