Now I'm 30, so I don't know exactly what transformer toys you grew up with, but I had a bunch of the "Beast Wars" toys. Which with my nostalgia glasses on seemed much more detailed in my memory than what these new Transformers toys look like they are advertising on their website. However searching for a picture of my Optimus Primal toy... it isn't quite as detailed as I remembered. So my point is that it is probably a bit of nostalgia making you think yours were so much better than what they have now.
The Universe incarnation of Generation One Optimus Prime is a redeco of the Robots in Disguise Scourge's Spychanger toy, a smaller, simplified version of the original mold. He replaces most of the black plastic with predominantly red and blue, with silver for detailing, with an overall deco making him resemble the original Optimus Prime. Like most Spychangers, he features high speed axles and can roll very well across smooth surfaces, but lacks the weight to propel him quickly.
Optimus appears again in the 2011 film Transformers: Dark of the Moon. Optimus receives his own armory consisting of weapons and flight tech that transforms into a trailer for him to carry in vehicular form. After assisting NEST operatives in fighting Shockwave at Chernobyl, Optimus learns that the humans have concealed the discovery of an ancient Cybertronian ship on the moon. He revives his old mentor, Sentinel Prime, with the Matrix of Leadership. However, Sentinel Prime later betrays the Autobots, murders Ironhide, wipes out most of NEST, and brings an army of Decepticons to Earth with Space Bridge Pillars. During the battle of Chicago, Optimus kills Shockwave, the Driller, and many Decepticon Protoforms. Finally, Optimus challenges the traitorous Sentinel Prime and they engage in a fierce duel. At first, Optimus appears to have the upper hand, but Sentinel eventually overpowers him and severs his right arm. However, before Sentinel can deliver the killing blow, Megatron attacks and severely injures him, having realized that he will never be able to remain leader of the Decepticons as long as Sentinel is at large. Megatron attempts to make a false truce with Optimus, but Optimus doesn't fall for it and attacks Megatron, decapitating him with his battle-axe. Optimus then bitterly executes the wounded Sentinel with Megatron's shotgun. With the Decepticons defeated and the war finally over, Optimus and the Autobots accept Earth as their new home.
Another thing different now from when I was a kid (70s/80s) is that the sets contain much fewer basic bricks. It seems the models are made out of all these exotic specialized pieces which are less useful for general building. Is this a business strategy to sell more sets by reducing the reusability, a marketing ploy to sell more pieces by making every set include unique collectable parts, or just trying to make the models look more realistic/slick? I think Lego was more fun when the majority of bricks were basic.
Optimus was checking up on the Autobots' ongoing energy collecting campaign when Wheeljack informed him that a disturbance in Sector 33HM of space-time would eventually cause major problems in its time-stream. Optimus assigned the investigation of this disturbance to Bumblebee, then noted that Hot Rodimus had not completed his latest report, communications with the young Autobo having been lost while he was on his own mission. With a brief inspirational speech, he urged his subordinates to redouble their efforts in maintaining harmony throughout reality. Little did Optimus suspect that in his own universe, Megatron was planning a coup against the Autobots... Uprising
During the war, Optimus was killed in battle by Megatron, but was eventually resurrected. The Fight Begins Coming to the dire realization that the war against the Decepticons had become a never-ending arms race, Optimus Prime challenged Megatron to single-combat, with their troops acting as witnesses to their terrible and final clash. The battle between both faction leaders ended with Megatron beaten down and goading Optimus into delivering the kill shot...
Voyager Optimus Prime is a redeco of the toy from the first movie's toyline. Like several redecos or retools of 2007 movie toys, there has been some effort to make this release noticeably different from the previous releases, though the toy ends up looking less accurate to the actual movie appearance than those previous releases. Optimus Prime has a sort of faded Autobot logo on the side of the truck's bunk, and kanji (Chinese characters) on the roof (ending up on his knee in robot mode.) The word "上海将军" means "Shanghai General", while "大将" means "Grand general".
In robot mode, Voyager class Optimus Prime is proportionally more accurate to his CGI design than the leader class toy and has a more accurate headsculpt. However, due to the aforementioned lessened complexity, significant sacrifices had to be made, such as "cheats" to the transformation sequence to achieve this. He is thus less accurate overall than he initially appears. In addition to previously mentioned changes, he carries much of the truck's front hood, grill and fenders on his back like a backpack. Nevertheless, he maintains a superb level of articulation and posability.
This minor redeco of the Optimus Prime Launcher features grey wheels, blue optics, and added red paint on its upper arms, while the launcher has grey plastic in place of black, smaller Autobot symbols on its sides, and gold paint on its interior instead of silver. The stock photography on the packaging depicts Optimus with a blue stripe on his built-in "trailer", which was omitted in the final product.
On another beautiful day, Optimus sat under a tree with Bumblebee and Hound, discussing the Decepticons. A while later, Beachcomber reported that Grapple had shot at him. Optimus smelled a Decepticon plot and led an assault on their headquarters, only to find that Grapple had been injected with a cerebro-shell, placing him in Decepticon control. Battle commenced, during which Grapple was freed and helped them defeat the Decepticon. Afterward Optimus said it all had been worth it to get Grapple back. Insecticon Attack!
There is another factor that comes with the sticker shock. As I showed before, LEGO has had $100+ sets for a while. However, only recently have they produced sets even more pricy than that. When we were kids, the $100 set was the pinnacle of LEGO. It was the set we all aspired to own. It was the set we all went straight to at the store. Of course we rarely ended up with that set, but that was our dream.
Optimus dueled Megatron atop of an overpass in a human city. Though he managed to knock Megatron's cannon loose early in the scuffle, Megatron managed to turn the tables on the Autobot leader, reattach his primary weapon, and blast his old foe. When Megatron moved in for the kill, Optimus got his second wind, and knocked Megatron clear off the overpass. They were always real to me.
This figure was only available in a two-pack with a Voyager Class Grimlock figure. The two-pack was exclusively available at Target stores in the United States, Canada and Australia, at Tesco stores in the United Kingdom and Hungary and at Galeria Kaufhof department stores in Germany. In Asia, most of the remaining stock are available in some hobby shops and some video stores like Speedy Video.
In robot mode he resembles previous Optimus characters: his angular chest windows are reminiscent of Cybertron Optimus Prime, while his near-animalistic limbs and color scheme are evocative of Beast Wars Optimus Primal. He has excellent articulation due to his many ball joints, and is armed with a rifle. The flame attachment can fit onto the end of the (non-firing) gun barrel.
Having been removed from toy store shelves after 1985, Optimus Prime was made available as a mail-away toy in the "Digital Doom on the Highway to Destruction" offer in the US in 1986 to coincide with the Transformers movie premiering that year. He cost $21.50 and 5 Robot Points. He was also offered in 'The Autobots Have A Special Mission For...' mail-away pamphlet and came with a special "Movie Edition Certificate" and a round sticker that read " Movie . Edition . Transformer" with the Autobot symbol in the middle. (This item is considered rare.)
Near the end of the series, in what is generally regarded by fans to be his most impressive feat, Optimus Prime takes on Galvatron without combining with any other transformer. Traditionally, throughout the three series and RiD, Optimus Prime has been shown to be physically weaker than Galvatron. At the end of the intense fight, Galvatron proved stronger than Prime, but Prime managed to destroy Galvatron with Vector Prime's sword.
Fire Blast Optimus Prime is a redeco of the previously released Power Hook Optimus Prime fast action battler. The color scheme is loosely based upon Generation 1 Rodimus Prime, explained rather oddly in the card bio as being the camouflage Optimus took while hunting Decepticons on Mars post-movie... because there are so many long-nose cabs driving around Mars. Yeah.
This agenda led the Predacon Megatron to attack the comatose Optimus Prime in stasis on prehistoric Earth, forcing Primal to take Prime's Spark into his body in order to preserve his life while his body underwent repairs. Primal was subsequently mutated into the massive "Optimal Optimus" form, which shared elements of Prime's form, prior to returning the Spark to its rightful place. The Maximals were occupied throughout the remainder of the series protecting Prime and the other Transformers aboard the crashed Ark until the Predacons were defeated. Various monuments to Optimus Prime appeared on Cybertron in Beast Machines, one of them a holographic statue in Iacon that Megatron took control of in order to trick Primal.
This Asian-exclusive redeco of AM-01 Optimus Prime features a sticker-less, extensive paint-job, coating his red parts and half-translucent arms in glossy metallic paint, painting his torso, shins, grille, fenders, and wheel rims silver, painting half of his feet in glossy black, having painted headlights, and featuring a unique "snake" insignia on his roof/right shoulder-pad, due to 2013 being the "Year of the Snake". O.P comes pre-assembled, lacks stickers, and features paint operations.
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Generation 1 Optimus Prime has appeared in numerous video games since the introduction of the Transformers series. He makes a cameo in the 1999 Beast Wars Transmetals video game for Nintendo 64, where he is killed by Megatron at the end of the campaign, showing what would have happened in the Beast Wars series with a Predacon victory. Prime is also one of the playable characters in the 2003 Japan-only Transformers game for the PlayStation 2 and the 2010 Transformers: War for Cybertron. Optimus Prime is also playable in the Hasbro Net Jet Transformers fighting game Transformers Battle Universe. Three versions of Optimus Prime are playable characters, including the first generation incarnation, his incarnations from the 2007 live-action film, and the incarnation from Transformers Animated. In this game, Optimus Primal is also a playable character. He is a regular character in the Nintendo GameCube and PlayStation 2 2003 fighting game DreamMix TV World Fighters. He appeared as a boss in a simple Flash-based video game on the Hasbro web site.
Prime's trailer opens up into his Combat Deck, containing the scout drone, Roller. The interior of the Combat Deck features three pegs that can accommodate Prime's laser rifle, fuel pump and nozzle accessories, and seating for two Diaclone drivers. As its central feature, the Combat Deck features a missile-armed repair drone pod mounted upon a boom lift arm (featuring another cockpit for a Diaclone driver), which can also be extended through holes in the trailer's roof and front-end when it is closed. Situated in the base of the boom arm is a spring-loaded launcher that can launch Roller out of the Combat Deck and into action. Roller himself has seating for four Diaclone passengers, and features a port that can accommodate either Prime's rifle or the fuel pump. The interior space of the trailer allows storage room for one standard Autobot car, which can also be shot forward by the launcher.