Great read. I have noticed an absolute drop in quality myself. My sets in my youth range from 83 to 90. My sons are from 2011 and there is a clear distinction. Aside from the weight of identical bricks being different, the older bricks stay together in a much more durable way than the new bricks. To test this, I created the same models using all old bricks and all new bricks and the difference was marked. I understand doing certain things to reduce costs, but not at the expense of quality…
Rodimus and Cyclonus appear together in the story Wreckers: Finale Part II from 2007. During the invasion of Cybertron, Cyclonus and Rodimus come to final blows, fighting each other to a stand-still. Both severely wounded, Cyclonus is about to kill Rodimus when the Predacon Rotorbolt arrives and kills Cyclonus for betraying him. Rodimus then helps Cheetor to drain the power of the Divine Light from Cryotek. When Rodimus is dying from wounds he received battling Cyclonus, Tigatron is unable to save the former Autobot leader, having given up the power of the Vok to save the Predacon Fractyl.[7]

As the number of sets released has increased, the harder it has been for stores to parcel out their shelving space. In order to make more sales, decisions have to be made as to which sets will be carried. Not every store can carry the whole product line (not even all official LEGO stores carry the whole product line). This process will favor the sets that drive sales the most, such as the licensed sets. The traditional boxes of bricks are pushed out of the way for the more profitable lines.

The Heroes of Cybertron PVC figurine line is an adaptation by Hasbro of Takara's own Super Figure Collection line. The main differences between the two lines is that Hasbro cast Autobot and Decepticon figures in clear blue or clear red PVC respectively, then completely painted the figurines. This allowed the eyes to 'glow' when placed in front of the light source.
When the Decepticons turned up in the same forest that the Autobots were taking a vacation in, Optimus took great pleasure in stopping them and returning the forest to pristine condition. Forest Rescue Mission Optimus was undertaking some repairs when Bumblebee offered to help, but Prime told him the repairs were too hard for him. When later the other Autobots were dismissive of Bumblebee's report of a Decepticon attack, Optimus alone listened to him, and they subsequently defeated the Decepticons. Bumblebee's Dangerous Mission
If Optimus decided to send the lead team to attack the Decepticon headquarters, the team managed to infiltrate the Decepticon headquarters by using Beachcomber’s knowledge of the secret doors’ location, and Brawn’s strength to keep the doors opened. The Autobots then stormed the fortress, and Optimus maimed Megatron himself with a shot of his rifle. He then grappled the Decepticon leader, and forced him to lead himself, Inferno and Beachcomber to the Decepticons’ lab. There, the Autobots disabled and destroyed the Destruction Beam device, captured Megatron, and left many Decepticons permanently maimed. Though they later traded Megatron back to the Decepticons for the safe relief of the Autobots captured in Center City, the Autobots were ultimately victorious that day.
If you're still on the fence about Masterpiece MPM-5 Decepticon Barricade, or are considering purchasing Masterpiece MPM-6 Ironhide (which is also currently available), now might be a great chance to grab this Amazon.com exclusive figure from Hasbro. As of this writing, MPM-5 Barricade is currently on sale at Amazon.com for $52.13, which is 35% off the regular retail price of $79.99. Part of the special deal is that he's also available for "FREE" One-Day shipping for Amazon Prime members. Order - Read More
A single-packed version of the battle damaged Voyager Optimus Prime toy from the Sam's Club exclusive three-pack. Although the assortment number and the general packaging style seemed to indicate that this might be a Best Buy exclusive, this has been confirmed to be an "international market" exclusive. It has been released in Asia, but will presumably not be available in the USA outside the Sam's Club three-pack.
Produced as an action figure by the Japanese company Kaiyodo, the main selling point of the line is the 'Revolver' joint. This gives the figure a high degree of articulation, allowing for many dynamic and varied poses. Hot Rodimus is number 047 in the Yamaguchi series, and comes with extra sets of hands, a pair of pistols, an extra head (which is molded with his binocular vision, as seen in The Transformers: The Movie) and a display stand.
Super class Energon Optimus Prime transforms into a Cybertronic short-nosed truck cab. A switch on his back offers four selectable sound effects, each one corresponding to one member of the Prime Force, the four drone vehicles contained within Prime's parallelogram-shaped trailer. A tiny, slightly recessed button above the switch activates the sounds. When Prime transforms to robot mode, the trailer stands upright to become a launch base of sorts for the Prime Force, with three of the trailer's four storage compartments featuring launching mechanisms that propel the vehicles into action. The Prime Force consists of Fire-1, a fire truck with an extending ladder and rotating turret; Copter-2, a helicopter with spinning rotors; Digger-3, a drill tank with a gear-wheel-activated spinning drill; and Submarine-4, a submarine with opening capture claws beneath its bow. The four interchangeable drones can combine with Prime to create his Super Mode; any drone is capable of forming any limb. When in Super Mode, Prime's chest panels are opened, in turn pressing a button on his side that creates more electronic sounds and lights up a red LED in his chest, representing the Spark of Combination.
Refractor and Laser Prime were only available in a box set named "Chaos on Velocitron" that includes Dynamus and Quickswitch, Parsec and Autobot Nautica, Fastclash, and a Rodimus Prime Titan Master head. The set was officially announced by Hasbro to be a Toys"R"Us exclusive, and was sold at stores in the United States, Canada, and Hasbro's Asian markets (such as Malaysia, Singapore, and Hong Kong). Despite this, it later became available via Amazon in the United States (but not in Canada) as well, actually sold by Amazon directly (as compared to a third-party seller).
A Deluxe-sized figure sold only in Japan and Asian markets by Takara Tomy. The package consists of a highly poseable skeletal frame called a Core Body, along with parts to assemble the Core Body to either a Protoform mode or robot mode. In Protoform, the figure can transform into an atmospheric Entry Mode. The figure with robot parts is able to fully transform into vehicle mode.[87]

A Toys R Us-exclusive item, this Titanium two-pack features the previously released War Within Optimus Prime and the upcoming War Within Megatron figures. Also included is an exclusive variant cover War Within comic book. Missing, however, is the unique base that comes with all single-pack 6-inch Titaniums (including the original release of War Within Optimus). The Megatron figure is also lacking its base, this despite bases for both figures being depicted on the instruction sheet.

In late 1993, Hasbro relaunched the Transformers franchise with the Generation 2 line, with production again largely being done by Takara. The subgroups concept was done away with for the first year, but there were no new molds or characters. Generation 2 re-used the molds for many of the characters from the 1984 and 1985 line, but with mostly different color schemes and finishes, as well as different weapons and accessories. Megatron's figure was released later on. As noted previously, Megatron's original alternate mode, or "transformation identity", was a handgun with attachments, but in Generation Two, this was changed to a tank due to safety and security concerns. Most of the 1994 figures were re-releases or recolors of European G1 releases.
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