Excellent article. Especially for pointing out how different we remember things from ‘when we were kids.’ (I swear Optimus Prime was two feet tall!) My only criticism is linking to those two Brickset articles about supposed “quality decline”… the headlines are sensationalist and inflammatory, and a LEGO rep eventually replied to the spurious claims with information that deflates much of the (somewhat unfounded) criticism. Also the comments give me a headache. Otherwise great stuff!
Available exclusively from Japanese clothing company A Bathing Ape in 2015, MP Convoy Reissue BAPE Ver. is a trailer-less redeco of the MP-10 mold sporting a unique deep red color scheme matching the Convoy Reissue BAPE Ver. RED of the original G1 toy, with "BAPE's famous camouflage pattern" and an ape head print on the shoulder replacing the usual faction symbol.
Virtually every toy in this list has a scannable insignia sticker on it. For Hasbro releases, it temporarily unlocks that toy as a playable character in the Robots in Disguise mobile game, and can only be scanned once per day. TakaraTomy releases simply check that off on their mobile app's collection list. It's honestly quicker and less redundant to say which toys don't have this feature. Meanwhile, scanning the Combiner Force toys' insignia stickers gives the player Tickets, which can be spent by giving them to Cryostase via the main map menu.
As the battle wore on, Optimus attempted to drive the Autobots too wounded to outrun the Beast themselves to safety, carrying them within his trailer. Jetfire showed up in time to rescue most of his passengers, leaving Optimus to deal with The Beast on his own. Seeing a city coming closer over the horizon, Optimus attempted to reach the Dinobots one last time from within The Beast. As his former troops remained unresponsive, Optimus led The Beast to its doom, blasting it a few more times before leading it to fall into a chasm. Optimus himself was rescued from the fall at the last possible moment by Jetfire’s timely return. As the two of them looked on at the Beast’s inert form, Optimus wondered out loud if their battles would truly ever come to an end. The Beast Within Part 2, Consequences
Hasbro's subsidiary Milton Bradley (MB) released the toy in Europe in late 1985, following a slight delay due to licensing issues; there are no less than three variants of MB-packaged Optimus Prime, one of them manufactured by Takara and sporting blue feet, the other two manufactured by Joustra as part of a deal with Hasbro/MB, one of them with blue and the other one with red feet;
A retool of Lockdown with a new head. He is a simplified toy that can auto-transforms from an unlicensed approximation of a Lamborghini Aventador rather than a Lamborghini Centenario LP770-4 into a Voyager-sized robot by pulling out the arms first, and then flip the figure over itself. He features articulation on his arms, and features 5mm compatible hands.
This silver-chromed redeco of the Leader-class Optimus Prime figure first saw the light of day as a prize in a TV Magazine mail-in, offered alongside a gold chrome version of the same toy (see above). Both figures were later made available again as prizes in a second contest in the September 2005 issue of TV Magazine, together with "Galaxy Convoy Custom Color Version" (see below). Despite being offered in equal quantities in these contests, this silver version is apparently much harder to come by.
Towering at only barely over two inches, this was actually not just the smallest movie-verse Optimus but even the smallest transformable figure of Optimus Prime for a while - ironically enough, being even slightly tinier than the Smallest Transforming Transformers Optimus Prime - that is, until he was later "out-tinied" by two other cute super deformed versions.
Part of the sixth wave of the 2010 Transformers toyline, this Optimus Prime is an all-new Deluxe class mold based on the original Generation 2 Laser Optimus Prime toy (see above). Transforming into a racing truck, he has some influences from the live-action movie Optimus Prime, including the more defined flames on his hood, athletic robot mode proportions and a more aggressive-looking translucent orange sword that can be held with both hands for maximum extreme chopitude. Optimus Prime features extensive use of translucent plastic in his arms, head and upper torso for a light-piping effect. Optimus also has a (non-detachable) matrix gimmick in robot mode that is formed by a relief pattern on the inside of the cab's side windows and is visible through the windshield/chest in robot mode. Like the Legends toy, he's part of "Reveal the Shield" and features a rubsign, this time on the roof. He is also very articulated and poseable, even featuring ankles and wrists that are both ball-jointed and hinged.
Power Surge Optimus Prime is a new mold, in the size of a Leader Class figure, which transforms in 7 steps. It comes with the Mini-Con Aerobolt, who transforms from a bird to his chestplate. This triggers electronic lights and sounds, as well as deploying a mask, two shoulder cannons, and a pair of large wings for the larger robot. His front truck kibble can be removed, but you can transform him into vehicle mode with the kibble on.
The original 1984 Optimus Prime toy was part of Takara's 1983 Diaclone toy line named "Battle Convoy". It was designed by the creative design team of Hiroyuki Obara, Shoji Kawamori, famous for his work in Macross, and Kohjin Ohno. The toy's characteristics, such as the head design and the use of the cab front as the upper torso, have become design elements in nearly every incarnation and variant of Optimus Prime. This particular toy has been reissued multiple times, mostly to commemorate the anniversary of the transformers franchise. Optimus Prime was also released as an Action Master and Powermaster toy in the original transformers toy line.
A Bic Camera and Joshin Kids' Land exclusive, this redeco is the first release of the Prime: First Edition Deluxe class Optimus Prime figure in Japan, featuring a slightly lighter hue of red (the stock photography provided by TakaraTomy, showed Orion Pax's red plastic features more pink than its original toy, this seems to have been a trick of the lighting or a photoshop), and greyish blue plastic. He features several customer-applied foil stickers, including Decepticon insignias of varying sizes. He comes with a gold vac-metal version of the Arms Micron, R.A., as well as the normal blaster-cannon.
Like some other Legends/Legion Class toys, several of the loose units were dumped in some Hobby Shop dealers in Asia, although this one is very likely to be an identical knockoff of the toy. While the paint applications are pretty much identical to the real deal, the pegs on the legs/trunk front can be a little too tight when attached. in some worst cases; it can break off if attempted to pull off by force.
Although the character was redesigned to some extent, like the other characters in the film, many classic design elements remain in his robot mode including a predominantly red torso, primarily blue legs, the presence of windows in his chest, smoke stacks on his shoulders, and a head design influenced by the original, featuring the iconic faceplate and ear finials. The faceplate is able to retract to reveal a mouth. His weapons include his iconic ion blaster, a Barrage cannon, two retractable energon blades that extend from his forearms, which is a homage to Prime's energy axe in the Generation 1 animated series, and two retractable energon hooks that extend from his wrists. The trailer contains an energy axe, a shield, and flight gear. In the later IDW comics, he displays the ability to produce a holographic driver.
One more thought: LEGO is a Danish company. The fluctuations in the price of LEGO such as the big bump around 1985-7 in Figures 1 and 2 could be because of a change in exchange rates. The conversion rate between the Danish Kronor and the US$ went from over 10 in 83 and 84 to less than 7 in 86 and 87. LEGO might have been slow to respond to changes in exchange rates, leading to the temporary bump. If you’d like to share data we can redo your graphs in DKK.
Optimus Prime was one of three Transformers characters immortalized in Gummy Candy form by the Frankford Candy & Chocolate Company. Released during the time when Classics had just replaced Cybertron on the toy shelves, Prime's candy depicts him in his Cybertron body, alongside Generation 1 Bumblebee and a kooky Cybertron/Classics Megatron cross-breed. The candies were all sold individually in blister bubbles.
Transformers GT "GT-R Prime" is a heavy retool of Alternity Convoy, transforming into a 1:32 replica of the Motul Autech GT-R race car used by the Nismo team in the Super GT racing championship series. He retains the flip-out blasters of the Alternity toy and can also wield his new Impact Wrench Gun accessory (also called the "Optimus Rifle" on the Transformers GT website), a weapon based on the impact wrenches used in car repairs. Like all GT toys, Prime also comes with a GT Sister, poseable human figures themed after race queens, his partner being a lady named Misaki.
It took two further years, but this figure was eventually released as part of the Japanese counterpart to the Alternators line (Binaltech) in 2008. Binaltech Convoy features some additional paint details, like his silver pelvis, additional patterns on his shoulders, and red paint on his engine-gun, and like all Binaltech figures, he also includes die-cast metal pieces. Unlike previous Binaltech releases, a bio-card was not included.
In order to come to some sort of conclusion about the price of LEGO, I needed to get some data on the historic retail prices of LEGO sets. The best source of this information is brickset.com. This website has data on almost all LEGO sets ever made and the retail pricing for many of them. I wrote a web scraping program to go through the Brickset database and make a database of set information. In order to keep the results relevant, I decided to compile one set that fit two basic qualifications:
Released as part of a collaboration between Transformers and Primitive Skateboarding, this figure is a black repaint of the Titans Return Powermaster Optimus Prime, with the deco somewhat resembling Nucleon Quest Super Convoy, but with some gold trims and Primitive Skateboarding markings partially designed by Primitive Skateboard founder Paul Rodriguez. He also comes with an extra ramp and skateboard accessory that resembles the one Daniel Witwicky used in The Transformers: The Movie, which Shreddicus Maximus (or any other Titan Master) can attach to. The ramp can also form Optimus Prime's gun.
Besides the inordinate number of Hogwarts Castles, we can draw similar conclusions from this chart as we can from the Pirate Ship Chart. The prices really have not changed that much in the measurable time-frame2. The weighted average for all the castles is 10.56 cents per piece. As with the Pirate Ships, there does seem to be a general increase in piece count, however.
If Optimus ordered his troops to come to the humans’ aid, they found themselves taking part in a struggle in futility, as the entire town was near-weightless, meaning they couldn’t put the humans anywhere where they wouldn’t float away once more. Then, the Autobots heard Decepticons approaching. Helpless in their current position, the Autobots were quickly eradicated by the Decepticons.