During the Cybertronian Civil War, Sentinel Prime was killed. Prior to his destruction, he bestowed the Matrix of Leadership to Optimus Prime, who became the new leader of the Autobots. Despite being one of the youngest Cybertronian leaders, Optimus demonstrated extraordinary courage and wisdom in the war against the Decepticons. He: treated all lives with benevolence, fought for freedom and peace, and continues to fight to protect the weak and maintain their beliefs.

Prime invited Wataru to visit the Autobots' subterranean base, and he gave the boy a personal tour as he carried the injured Bumblebee to the infirmary. Telling him the story of the Energon Cube and the Autobots' coming to Earth, Prime showed Wataru the large chunk of the cube that they had managed to recover. He then turned his attention to repairing Bumblebee's wounds, and as such, did not notice Wataru reaching out to touch the cube sliver. A bizarre energy discharge resulted that not only showed the Autobots images of Another Time & Place, but also healed both Autobots' wounds. Prime dived at Wataru and hauled him away from the shard, returning things to normal, but leaving Prime with grave concerns over what the strange occurrence might mean. Kingdom of Giants
The U.S. release of Super Fire Convoy had the Japanese voice replaced with an English voice (with the lines, "Optimus Prime, Maximize!" and "Autobots, Transform"), and Autobot insignias were added on the side panels. Much like the Japanese version, Optimus Prime's normal robot mode can combine with Ultra Magnus (sold separately) to form Omega Prime.[48]
In one of his less impressive moments, after running out of ammo during a battle with Deathsaurus, Optimus Prime ordered his fellow Autobots to improvise and hurl everything that wasn't nailed down at their enemy. This included the Blackball, unfortunately. Catching it, Deathsaurus began to fantasize about his inevitable galactic conquest, all the while being pelted with rocks and litter. Frustrated, Deathsaurus accidentally hurled the Blackball back to the Autobots in a fit of rage. Good Job! Deathsaurus!!
Optimus Primal, leader of the Maximal faction in the Beast Wars animated series and toy line, is not Optimus Prime. Primal is one of the Maximal descendants of the Autobots, who took the name to honor Optimus Prime. The same applies to the Megatron of this era. Before the animated series began, Hasbro envisioned Prime and Megatron as their beast counterparts, but once the animated series began, this had already been changed. Design elements, such as Prime's mouth-plate slitted to add an actual mouth for the animated series and the first mini-comic that came packaged with the toys, suggest this. Nonetheless, Optimus Prime and Megatron were a major reason the Beast Wars began.
In Spotlight: Doubledealer, Hot Rod's search was interrupted by Dealer's arrival on Earth, with orders for Hot Rod: find the Magnificence and use it to learn what they could about the Expansion. Hot Rod took Dealer to his hiding spot, which turned out to be the planet where they first found the device. As Dealer and Hot Rod closed on the Magnificence, he went over his first visit to the planet in his mind, and how things could have gone so wrong. Eventually he began to have suspicions, and upon locating the Magnificence, asked it the question that haunted him: had Dealer betrayed him? Sadly, it revealed the truth, and Hot Rod was forced to kill Dealer as the traitor attacked. Looking down on his remains, Hot Rod realized the truth had been staring him in the face, he just had not wanted to accept it. He then used the Magnificence to find out all he could about the Expansion, and relayed the information to the Autobots.
I mean you could argue that they are returning to the way the original Transformer toys worked. Here is an example of the OG Optimus toy. I went to Hasbro's website to see what the most current version of Optimus is that they are selling and I found this. That actually looks surprisingly similar, though I would argue they have gone more of the direction of making the robot look more robotic and the truck a little less truck like but its still a solid middle ground.
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…

Hot Rod identified the Decepticons on board through the damaged hull and immediately attacked the targets within using low powered, rapid fire bursts. When the Decepticons returned fire, Hot Rod changed tactics and began firing more concentrated blasts at the shuttle itself. Eventually, he managed to disable the shuttle. With their cover blown, Megatron ordered his forces to attack and the Decepticons began pouring out, beginning their planned assault on Autobot City. Before focusing his attention on the onslaught, an incensed Megatron destroyed the observation platform on which Hot Rod and Daniel were standing. True to his protective Autobot instincts, the first concern of Hot Rod was for the safety of Daniel. Quickly shielding the young boy, the two survived the platform collapse but were soon cornered by Blitzwing and Shrapnel. Timely intervention by the old and experienced Autobot Kup diverted the cannon fire from Blitzwing and allowed the three of them to escape.
Optimus made his way to the Primal Basilica, where he found Perceptor standing over the Mistress of Flame's battered corpse. Unable to do anything for her, Prime activated the Basilica's defenses as a means of stalling Trypticon. Learning from Perceptor that Rodimus had given up the Matrix, the two entered the chamber of the Chorus of the Primes to have the Matrix returned to him. Desperate Actions However, Optimus revealed the Matrix was not for him, but rather for Perceptor, as he wanted to make sure it would be taken as far away from Trypticon's grasp as possible. He guided Perceptor to a secret exit from the Basilica and sent the scientist on his way. Run for Our Lives Warned by the Chorus to "beware the power of the Primes", Optimus charged back towards the battlefield and began attacking Trypticon, rescuing Victorion. Optimus led the Combiners in battle against Trypticon, but the Titan managed to hit him, sending him hurtling towards some sharp rubble. Thankfully, he was caught at the last moment by Fortress Maximus. In Good Hands
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