Legends class Optimus Prime is an extremely simplified toy of the extremely complex movie design. As such, he features numerous unavoidable inaccuracies, such as not transforming or even looking very much like the original design or the larger toy versions in robot mode. However, proportionally Legends class Optimus Prime is not far off from the real truck and the Leader class toy's vehicle mode, aside from missing a smokestack on the driver's side. He is articulated at the shoulders and upper legs via ball-joints.
The first Nightwatch Optimus Prime is an extensive redeco of the previously released Leader-class Optimus Prime, replacing most of his red and blue with different shades of blue and black. In fact, he resembles the original Diaclone Powered Convoy color scheme of Generation 1 Ultra Magnus's truck cab. The previously blue and red flames have been replaced with silver flames, while various other decos have been replaced by copper.
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.
The values started becoming inconsistent and skewed in Generation 2 and Beast Wars, when Hasbro apparently thought no child will ever want a toy that is described as anything less than perfect. Thus it became rarer and rarer to see any low numbers. Most characters' numbers hardly ever dipped below 8, the Go-Bot version of Optimus Prime was the first character to have all values at 10, a trend that would repeat for most "leader" characters. When even more powerful versions of the Optimus Primal toy (such as Optimal Optimus) were introduced, Hasbro even invented a "10+" rating in an attempt to keep increasing the power levels. With the Transformers: Cybertron line a few characters even got "Unknown" and "Infinity" ratings.
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.
Movie the Best Nemesis Prime is a redeco of the TakaraTomy exclusive Calibur Optimus Prime figure, with darker paint and plastic, and bright, metallic, purple eyes, and the mark of Quintessa on his face. As for the weapons, the Caliber Axe uses translucent purple plastic instead of orange, and there is more silver at the base of the blade. The Overshield has black replacing the original's silver and purple replacing the original's bronze.
Transformers: Tribute Optimus Prime is a redeco of the 2007 Leader Class toy, to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the live-action film series. While the deco's paint mask is the same as the said figure, he features a more saturated blue and red, and chromed feet/front grills which was used for the MA-21 redeco, and he also features chrome on both sides of the stomach. While the Hasbro stock photo shows that his feet are slightly mistransformed in robot mode, the Takara stock photos shows his feet correctly flipped out.
In the war for Cybertron eons ago, Optimus was once Orion Pax, a historical archivist in the Iacon library. Throughout his studies on Cybertron's past, Orion became aware of the social inequality among Cybertron's populace. He became inspired by a gladiator taking the name of one of the thirteen original Primes, Megatronus. Megatronus attempted to start a revolution to overthrow Cybertron's current leadership and take the mantle of Prime. However, Orion preached a different ideology, declaring that violence is not the means to achieve justice, and thus, Megatronus changed his name to Megatron and severed ties with Orion, starting the Great War that destroyed Cybertron. Orion soon ventured into the core of Cybertron and was bestowed with the Matrix of Leadership by Primus, becoming Optimus Prime. After Cybertron became barren and lifeless, he and Megatron took their war to Earth, after which Megatron disappeared for three years. With Ratchet, Arcee, Bumblebee, Bulkhead, and Cliffjumper under his command, the Autobots were granted asylum on Earth by the US government if they kept the Decepticons at bay. However, in "Darkness Rising", the Decepticons return, killing Cliffjumper and target Jack, Raf, and Miko, three children who were seen with Arcee and Bumblebee. Optimus requested they be brought to base and know the full story, much to Arcee and Ratchet's dismay. Megatron returned soon after, wielding Dark Energon and nearly killing Optimus and Ratchet with a horde of reanimated Cybertronian corpses. Optimus later fought Megatron on the latter's space bridge, which Megatron intended to use to bring forth an army of undead to conquer Earth. Though Optimus is nearly killed by Megatron, he is able to gain the upper hand, and leaves Megatron to his apparent destruction when the Autobots destroy the space bridge. However, Optimus later confided in Ratchet that he still mourns Megatron's death, as he had a small glimmer of hope he could be turned to good. However, he does not underestimate Megatron's successor, Starscream.
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…
Released as part of the first wave of the Energon Igniters Nitro Series, this Optimus Prime is a new Voyager-sized mold that converts from a robot based on his Age of Extinction body into a truck in 11 steps, and he features 5mm-compatible hands & articulation on his head, arms, and only his upper legs. He also features built-in Ion Cannons in this lower leg panels, activated in vehicle mode. He also comes with his own energon core, which is a different mold from his Power Plus toy.
A very limited number of Gold Masterpiece Convoy figures were given away in a Lucky Draw contest in Japan. The figure uses the same design as Masterpiece Convoy, but every piece, including the windows and weapons, is cast in a gold color, reminiscent of his electrum coating from the episode The Golden Lagoon. The only exception is the tires, which remain black rubber. It comes packaged in the usual Masterpiece Convoy box, with the only telltale sign being the gold lettering in the "Master Piece" label. It's not clear how many were made, but it is thought to be no more than 10 or 20.
Part of the new Generations Cyber Battalion series, Optimus Prime is a new mold which stands 7 inches tall, and transforms from a truck (which is based on the Generations Thrilling 30 Legends Class Optimus Prime figure) into a robot in just 7 simple steps. The figure's transformation engineering had taken cues from the Reveal the Shield Legends Class Optimus Prime figure, while it still retains the same ol' articulation.
This toy, as well as "Shake Bulkhead", was a bit of a chore to obtain. First you had to buy a Happy Meal on July 30th or 31st, which netted you a Dark of the Moon Optimus Prime or Bumblebee toy and a "weekend exclusive Special DVD and MechTech Sheet with red ticket". Said ticket was then traded in at participating toy stores when buying any Dark of the Moon toy to get one of the two charms. (Completing the set with "Potato Bumblebee" was considerably easier, at least.)
This Optimus Prime is a minor redeco of the One-Step Changer figure, omitting the paint apps on the knees, the flames on his shoulders, and changing the robot mode chest's deco. Along with his wavemate Bumblebee, Optimus Prime loses his pin on his leg, which is used to activate Stomp & Chomp Grimlock's pop-out weapons and gimmicks. As with the first wave of the Turbo Changers, Optimus features a nearly invisible tampograph on his vehicle front, which can be revealed with Mega Turbo Changer Dragonstorm's UV-powered Cyberfire gimmick.
Leader class figure, this is his form used in the Cybertron television series. Can combine with Leobreaker (or Nemesis Breaker) and/or Cybertron Wing Saber, and can use Metroplex's axe or Vector Prime's sword. At first, Optimus Prime's (Galaxy Convoy in the Japanese version) alt-mode is a futuristic firetruck, although some believe it to be some sort of mobile weapons platform (the show itself treats it as a firetruck). This can also transform into a wing mode, with wings and cannons on each side of the truck. In addition to his standard robot mode, he can combine with his rear 'trailer' section to form a heavily armed super mode. That trailer section can also form an independent weapons platform, usable by anyone. His face, designed in the classic Prime style, merges the two mouth-plate elements - a slitted version to expose his mouth, like Beast Wars Optimus Primal did on the television series and a full mouth-plate which can rise to cover it.
I agree with Aidan but would expand on his point. It’s not just that the sets seemed bigger; they were. As the relative complexity of sets has increased, so too has the piece count, but there has been an overall decline in the size of the models due to increased build complexity and a corresponding reduction in size of the pieces required to create such detail. The negative affect on perceived value in this is apparent, though I would argue, misguided when one considers the build quality and detail of new and recent sets.
The Japanese release of Powermaster Optimus Prime actually represented a new character named Ginrai, and featured several retools: the cab featured die-cast metal, shortened smokestacks, vacuum-metalized plastic and clear blue windows, while the trailer was given retractable super robot fists. This Japanese version was eventually issued by Hasbro in 2003 as part of the Commemorative Series collection (see below).
A Japan-exclusive release of the Voyager Class figure with a trailer and a different Mech Tech weapon. The trailer opens like the original G1 toy and fits up to two Deluxe Class vehicles of the same toy line. In addition, the trailer can hold over 20 Mech Tech weapons. The supplied Mech Tech weapon is a blaster with a retractable blade designed similarly to Optimus' forearm swords.
Optimus Prime is among the three Autobot figures available to play in the Monopoly Transformers Collectors Edition game. As the figurehead of the entire Transformers franchise, Optimus Prime has been on more pieces of merchandise than can be stated here. Several statues and busts of Optimus Prime as well as Optimus Prime themed objects have been released by various companies since the return of Transformers to prominence, such as the "Optimus Prime Oral Care Station". Other figures released include various PVCs as part of Takara's "Super Collection Figure" line, which were later imported as part of Hasbro's "Heroes of Cybertron" series. Larger "Mega Collection Figure" PVCs were articulated and came with energy axe and gun figures. As part of the merchandising wave for the first Transformers film in 2007, Hasbro's Playskool line released a Transformers-themed version of Mr. Potato Head based on Optimus Prime. To keep with the potato theme, the toy was labeled "Optimash Prime" and the packaging included the slogan "More than meets the fry", a potato-oriented version of the Transformers slogan "More than meets the eye".
Optimus Prime is the fictional protagonist of the Transformers: Robots in Disguise (Fire Convoy in the original Japanese version) branch of the Transformers universe. Based on the character of the same name, Prime once again leads the Autobots against the Decepticons. His voice actor, Neil Kaplan, does his voice in a style reminiscent of that of Peter Cullen, the voice of the original Optimus Prime. Wired Magazine nominated Fire Convoy as one 12 most ridiculous Transformers ideas of all time.