Optimus Prime is primarily voiced by Peter Cullen in most of his incarnations, who voiced him in the original series. Following the production of the 2007 film, Cullen reprised his role for the sequels and supporting media and would even voice Optimus in later series such as Transformers: Prime. Optimus has been voiced by a number of other voice actors in other series such as Neil Kaplan, Garry Chalk, and David Kaye in the series Transformers: Robots in Disguise, Unicron Trilogy, and Transformers Animated, respectively.
This toy's design has directly and indirectly influenced numerous others over the years, including many future versions of Generation One Optimus Prime himself as well as new interpretations of the character for Armada, the live-action movie, and Transformers Animated. Redecos of those toys have in turn spread the toy's iconic look to several other characters and many of their subsequent toys: Ultra Magnus, Scourge, and the various Nemesis Primes. Additionally, a toy that was originally intended to be the original Optimus Prime was eventually retconned to be the new character Optimus Primal, bringing Prime's appearance over to that character (and eventually Primal Prime as well.) In Japan, this began a tradition of Beast Era Convoys emulating Prime's look, spawning still more toys that trace part of their lineage back to this one.
Oh, also, I should add that I would like to see if this trend is the same for specific themes, or just over all themes. Although I would guess that the individual themes would show the same general trend you discuss here, one reason individuals might believe in the “price increase fallacy” might be because of the individual themes they support. But again, I think that if you do this, you will find the themes fit the trend as well. If you are looking to go into the numbers more, this might be an interesting area to investigate.
Released in the latter stages of the Cybertron toyline, this redeco of the Leader-class Optimus Prime figure introduced a new colour scheme that several other tail-end releases would emulate. Taking its name from the Japanese version of Cybertron and with a bio noting that this new body depicts Prime after he embarks on his galaxy-spanning mission at the end of the Cybertron cartoon, "Galaxy Force" Optimus Prime replaces the original toy's blue parts with black and the translucent blue with smokey clear, and moulds several—but not all—grey parts out of red plastic, including the toy's rifles, rail gun covers, missile launchers, and Super Mode leg guns. In the realm of new paint operations, Prime now sports all four Cyber Planet Key symbols on his shoulders, and his unique Matrix-shaped Cyber Key (now with the code lo9x) finally has a gold-painted border, as it had always had in Japan. Additionally, Prime's hip joints were tightened up with this release, making it easier to stand him up in Super Mode.
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Studio Series Optimus Prime is an all new Voyager Class mold that transforms from robot into a Peterbilt 379 semi-truck. He comes with a pair of Energon Swords, which can be mounted onto his arms or store on the back of his robot mode or truck mode. The figure combines engineering concepts from his Age of Extinction Voyager Class figure with techniques previously used on Prime: First Edition Optimus Prime. He also features a more subdued color scheme compared to other Optimus Prime figures. Like the rest of the Studio Series figures, the figure prioritizes robot mode scale and thus stands shorter than his Voyager Class wavemate Starscream. The CG renders depict him possessing long smokestacks, but the final product has them shortened... again. He also comes with a cardboard backdrop display depicting the climatic forest battle from Revenge of the Fallen.
Originally, Optimus Prime was created as the leader of the Autobots, though it is unknown how he was created or his origins. In a possible future, Megatron was threatened by the existence of the Aerialbots and had Shockwave build a time machine to send them back in time to get rid of them. However, he only ended up changing history for the better. In the revised timeline, Optimus Prime began his life as a robot named Orion Pax, a mostly defenseless dock worker during the Golden Age of Cybertron nine million years ago, with a girlfriend named Ariel and a best friend named Dion. During this time, a new breed of robot with new flight capabilities appeared on the planet that Orion idolized. When Megatron, the leader of the new group of robots, approached him with inquiries about using one of the dock warehouses, Orion was swayed by Megatron. Both Orion and Ariel were severely wounded when Megatron and his forces attacked in order to claim the energy stored there. Searching for someone to help them, the time-displaced Aerialbots took Orion and Ariel to the ancient Autobot, Alpha Trion, who used them as the first subjects for the new reconstruction process he had developed involving rebuilding the frail Autobot frames into more battle-hardy configurations.
Prime is loaded with a ridiculous number of features and accessories. The robot itself is highly poseable, and both the smokestacks on Prime's shoulders and the fuel tanks on his legs can be rotated forward to act as guns, even featuring sculpted detail to this effect. As ever, he comes with a trailer that opens up into his crazy-detailed Combat Deck, featuring more action features than ever before. In trailer mode alone, it features a flip-down support stand so it can stand alone, a spring-loaded pop-out ramp instead of a fold-down one, and when the trailer is split for transformation, the traditional support legs underneath automatically swing out into place. The trailer houses most of Prime's accessories, including his ion blaster (with a moveable ammo clip to allow for multiple poses) and energon-axe, as well as his classic gas pump accessory, now with a poseable wire instead of a rubber hose. Two fold-out compartments provide storage space for six of Prime's interchangeable fists, while the other two remain attached the robot: two clenched, two open, a pointing right fist, a tilted left fist (for holding the ion blaster's ammo clip), and two fists with slots to grip the miniscule Matrix of Leadership that fits in a tiny chamber in Prime's chest. The Combat Deck's artillery robot features two flip-out handles that Prime can grip as if aiming the drone's guns, and Roller is also included, with three different 3mm ports to hold Prime's gun and gas pump. Lastly, Prime comes with a rocket pack like those used by the Autobots in such Generation 1 cartoon episodes as "Dinobot Island", and a stand shaped like the Autobot insignia that allows him to be displayed in mid-air, as if in flight. The rocket pack also has 3mm ports for Prime's weapons, and stores on the front of the trailer in vehicle mode.
Rodimus gained the help of the criminal Witwicky family, believing they would help him learn more about Earth. After fighting Goldbug for leadership of the Autobots, he renamed himself Rodimus Prime. His first attack on the humans was to take control of the base controlling a human military satellite and use it to blackmail the humans into making him the leader of the world. The Decepticons were able to break into the base, where Heatwave used his ability to control machines to have the satellite fire on its own controls and then destroy itself.
A Deluxe sized version of Energon Optimus Prime. Looks like a smaller version of the Leader class toy, without any trailer or drones. Can Powerlinx with other Energon Autobot toys. This toy was a Toys-R-Us store exclusive in the U.S. and was packaged together with a downsized Energon Megatron. In Japan this toy was packaged together with Kicker and a Star Saber accessory.
He comes with a MechTech rifle converts into a large battle axe, and can be locked in by pulling the lever all the way in and tilting it into a gap to the left. The rifle has a separate flip-out handle, while the axe uses the rifle's long barrel as the handle, meaning that Optimus can grip the axe with both of his hands. This weapon was also retooled in a running change, adding a stop to the handle instead of relying solely on the gear system to prevent the locking assembly from flying off into parts unknown.
The Power Plus series are similar to the Power series, except these come with the core that unlocks extra features. The Bumblebee figures in this series are nearly the same as the Power series versions (Camaro ‘Bee’s Power Plus figure has his unmasked head), so if you’re going to get them, and you want the cores, go with these versions. If you want Optimus Prime at this size, though, you’ll have to go with this version.
Like the original figure, Powermaster Prime is composed of two major components: his truck cab, which transforms into Prime himself, and his trailer, which is essentially a heavily-armed version of the original. The trailer has a fold-down ramp to allow the storage of a smaller Transformer, or perhaps spare accessories. The trailer transforms into a battle station armed with two long black rifles and two grey double-barreled cannons (featuring seating for Powermaster engine figures), all of which Optimus Prime can also wield in his fists.
Also, as a new feature, most figures include advanced "automorph technology", which is designed to create quicker and easier conversion, which means moving one part of the vehicle or robot causes other parts to move, creating a final shift to battle mode; this was successful because the transformation was more complex in the movie line than in any other Transformers toy line.
Available exclusively from Japanese clothing company A Bathing Ape in March 2013, "Convoy Reissue BAPE VERSION RED CAMO" (コンボイ復刻版 BAPE® VERSION RED CAMO) is a redeco of the original Optimus Prime toy sporting a unique new red color scheme, along with a red trailer decorated with a camouflage pattern. Both trailer and Prime himself feature the A Bathing Ape logo in place of an Autobot symbol, while the floor of the trailer's Combat Deck mode features new Bathing Ape-themed labels. The figure comes in a recolored version of the original Japanese packaging.
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.
In The Transformers: Devastation, Hot Rod is repaired and reformatted into a Dodge Viper. Dealer tried to convince him to pull some strings to get him to Earth, but Hot Rod and Wheeljack had the more important task of rescuing Ironhide. They ran into a bit of trouble with the Machination's Headmasters. They managed to escape temporarily, but were found and Wheeljack was incapacitated. Hot Rod easily held his own with the Headmasters, and noted that for some reason they had lost their "edge". He received a little help from Hardhead, who was mainly there to take Hot Rod and the others back to the Ark-32 for evacuation to Garrus-9. Hot Rod refused to go, wanting to see the Headmaster mystery through to the end. Hardhead reluctantly let him go.
Available exclusively from Japanese clothing company A Bathing Ape in 2017, MP Convoy Reissue BAPE Ver. is a trailer-less redeco of the MP-10 mold sporting a unique black color scheme matching the Convoy Reissue BAPE Ver. BLACK of the original G1 toy, with "BAPE's famous camouflage pattern" and an ape head print on the shoulder replacing the usual faction symbol.
Released to commemorate the 10th anniversary of Revenge of the Fallen, this Studio Series Optimus Prime is a retool of the figure above, featuring many new parts, namely a new backpack, chest piece, and a pair of non-transforming fenders/legs, to better resemble his appearance in the first two movies. These new parts allow him to combine with Studio Series Jetfire to form "Jetwing Optimus Prime." His color scheme features a much higher contrast than the previous release. Instead of Energon Swords, he now comes with an ion blaster like that used in the battle of Mission City. He also comes with a cardboard backdrop display depicting the highway fight with Bonecrusher from the first Transformers film.
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.
Optimus Prime is the awe-inspiring leader of the Autobot forces. Selfless and endlessly courageous, he is the complete opposite of his mortal enemy Megatron. Originally a mere civilian known as Orion Pax or Optronix, he was chosen by the Matrix of Leadership to command, the first in a number of heavy burdens he has been forced to bear. Another is his bringing of the Transformers' conflict to Earth. Every casualty, human or Cybertronian weighs heavily on his spark. He does not show this side to his soldiers and never succumbs to despair. The Autobots need a decisive, charismatic leader and that is what he gives them. It was that leadership which turned the tide of the Great War.
Optimus Prime is one of the playable Autobot characters in the 2010 video game Transformers: War for Cybertron. In the Autobot campaign, he starts off as Optimus, a warrior who rallies his fellow autobots against the Decepticons following the reported death of their leader Zeta Prime. He succeeds in defending the Autobots' home city of Iacon from Starscream and his forces. Optimus then receives a distress call from Zeta Prime. Knowing that this is most likely a trap set by Megatron, he proceeds anyway with a rescue mission. He lets himself, Bumblebee, and SideSwipe be captured by the Decepticons and is sent to a prison in Kaon, the decepticon capital, in an elaborate scheme to free Zeta Prime and all imprisoned Autobots. He frees all the other prisoners, and defeats Soundwave and his minions Frenzy, Rumble, and Laserbeak, but he is too late to save Zeta Prime. After taking Zeta Prime's body back to the Autobot high council, he is bestowed upon the well earned title of Prime.
After a period of effective leadership, which saw the activation of several new Transformers including the Aerialbots, who Prime infused with life using the Matrix, Prime engaged Megatron in a video game duel for possession of a super fuel. Prime was victorious, but Megatron implemented a cheat code that killed Prime later. Autobot surgeon Ratchet's subsequent efforts to restore him were unsuccessful, and his body was launched into space. The Autobots were unaware of the presence of the physical Matrix within the corpse. The funeral barge eventually crashed on a giant moon and, as it lay there for an untold time, the Matrix reached out to nearby living organisms, studying and recreating them.
In the "Transformers" film, the robots had more of an alien feel to them to fit the theme of an alien invasion. The robots (stated by Optimus Prime) in the film are actual sentient organisms and not just giant, mindless, and mechanical machines. The robots can also speak their own alien language sounding like what seems to be based on different pitches and frequencies. Alongside that, they gave them more alien features that probably wasn't mentioned in the comics or T.V. series such as a highly advanced exoskeleton, force field, and a special "alien meteoroid" mode which they transform into individually and arrive on earth in. The exoskeleton is a "self-regenerating metal" in which the aliens are composed of (stated in the film) that is the equivalent of living skin that heals itself.
In "Sick Mind", Optimus is infected with the life-threatening Cybonic plague, prompting Arcee and Bumblebee to infiltrate the Nemesis to find a cure for the virus Megatron himself created. As Optimus grows weaker, he learns of Megatron's survival of the space bridge explosion. It was Bumblebee entering Megatron's mind via cortical psychic patch and retrieving the cure that saved Optimus. In the next episode, "Out of His Head", Optimus is, surprisingly, saved by the revived Megatron when he intercepted Starscream's attempted nosedive to kill him.