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.
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.
General Optimus Prime later attended a meeting of the Convoy held by Starscream. There, he assured the others present that he had been mistaken about the rumored Megatron's identity. Starscream was convinced, but the rest of the Convoy were savvy to the truth. The other Optimuses supported General Optimus Prime's decision, stating that if C-81 had earned the General's trust, that was good enough for the rest of them. Optimus was later seen hanging out with Spy-Eye on his off-time. Cybertron's Most Wanted
For its release in Korea, Hasbro Asia provided a collector coin featuring truck-mode Optimus Prime on one side and "MP-01L" on the other. The coin came mounted on a card featuring lineart of the Autobot leader's head, the stark black design of which could be mistaken for promoting the earlier "Sleep Mode" release. The limited release (and general lack of enthusiasm for the collector coins in Korea) makes this one of the more difficult Masterpiece coins to find.
Pressing the button on his robot mode chest activates the red lights (well, because the blue ones are expensive for the price point) on his chest, and the sounds and voice phrases (provided by Taitem Kusunoki) were played along with the light-up gimmick. Pressing the button for a few seconds will activate his long voice line with transformation sounds.
Prime: First Edition Matrix of Leadership Optimus Prime converts from robot mode to his truck mode. He comes with a gun than he can wield with his hands, as well as peg onto his hitch in vehicle mode, with different pegs for either configuration. Similar to a previous Optimus Prime toy, he features some faux-kibble in the form of his actual windshield chest being covered by sculpted panels featuring his characteristic windshield-chest. His arms are slightly longer than his original design's arms.
A non-transforming model kit of Optimus Prime by Takara Tomy, sold exclusively in Japan. The kit comes with a pre-assembled inner frame that features a high rate of poseability similar to Master Grade Gundam model kits. The kit comes with two swords and two different sets of attachments for them: one set for the forearms and the other to replace the hands. Pre-ordered units of the first batch came with battle hooks.
In "Prime Target", Lord Cholmondeley, a big game hunter, set his sights on the ultimate trophy, the head of Optimus Prime. In order to lure Optimus in, Cholmondeley captured Tracks, Bumblebee, Jazz, Beachcomber, Grapple, Blaster and Inferno. Windcharger and Huffer were able to avoid being trapped. When Cosmos learned where Cholmondeley was keeping the captured Transformers, Optimus Prime accepted Cholmondeley's challenge to meet him alone. Although interrupted by Astrotrain and Blitzwing's attempt to ally the Decepticons with Cholmondeley, Optimus defeated the big game hunter and freed the Autobots. Cholmondeley and the stolen jet were handed over to the Soviets by the Autobots as punishment for his actions.
The "Breakout Battle" set includes another take on a screen-accurate "Scrapyard Optimus Prime", featuring a brown paint wash on tan plastic. The set was a shared exclusive between Toys "R" Us, online retailers such as Big Bad Toy Store, and Myer in Australia. The set was released in Australia, Singapore, and Canada but never actually made it to retail in the U.S. The set also includes Rollbar and a Vehicon.
This figure is an exclusive to San Diego Comic-Con 2011. The toy comes in a packaging shaped like the Matrix of Leadership, which one could wear around their neck, preferably at the convention itself, so passers-by can exclaim "WHERE THE HELL DID YOU GET THAT?" and then try to get one themselves. The Matrix itself comes packaged in a box that is designed to look like Optimus Prime's chest, and opens accordingly. The chest window doors are sealed with a round magnet.
This Micron-covered "Ultimate Mode" for Arms Master Optimus was shown in the Cybertron Satellite segment of "Sealed Transformation! The Mystery of Orion Pax". He wears the Matrix on his chest with Balo, Balo G, R.A. and Shining R.A. attached to it, Zori M on his back, Jida R and Igu on his right shoulder, Jida and Noji on his left shoulder, B.H. and C.L. on his right arm, B.H. B and C.L. GR on his left arm, Gora on his right hip and Gora II on his left, B.2 and Shining O.P. on his right leg, and Shining B.2 and O.P. on his left leg. Finally, he wields the Cosmotector and Dark Matter Calibur in his hands. Phew!
In the episode "Along Came a Spider", Optimus discoveres that Elita did survive the ordeal with the giant spiders and was transformed into the technorganic Decepticon Blackarachnia. He offeres to try and help her, but is turned down violently as Blackarachnia has still not forgiven him. However, when she nearly dies trying to use the Allspark key to purge her organic half, Optimus saves her and repeats his offer to help her. She stings him instead, vowing that she will never trust him.
Optimus was able to rally Autobot factions from across Cybertron to the cause and launch an all-out attack on Shockwave's fortress. He headed the assault himself, but broke rank when he saw the image of Shockwave blasting Ultra Magnus upon one of the many monitor screens planted around the Decepticon's headquarters. Optimus charged in to confront Shockwave, beating down all opposition along the way. Coming upon Shockwave's throne room, Prime was greeted by Ultra Magnus, who pointed him towards a secret passage through which Shockwave had absconded. Leaving his wounded brother to rest, Optimus barged into Shockwave's secret chambers, only to be overpowered and have the Matrix ripped from his chest. With it, Shockwave was finally able to activate Vector Sigma. Countdown to Extinction Stalling, Prime listened as Shockwave recounted the history of Cybertron, and eventually Ultra Magnus arrived, having recovered, to attack and defeat Shockwave. Prime and Grimlock helped him escape from the fortress as it crumbled to the ground. With Shockwave's defeat, the Autobots would now be able to start rebuilding Cybertron towards true peace... but Optimus remained troubled by Shockwave's motives; he recognized that Shockwave would not be urged to action by mere fancy. Optimus pondered what greater threat awaited Cybertron for Shockwave to so thoroughly plan for its arrival. Revelation The injuries Prime took in this conflict necessitated a prolonged restoration period in stasis. Both he and Ultra Magnus were tended to by Perceptor and Hoist as they recuperated. Generation 1 #0 Though Magnus recovered in due course, Optimus's systems had received a more severe shock due to the Matrix being forcefully removed from his frame. Thus, he needed additional time spent in recovery before he could reboot. Black Sunshine
A late-run extensive redeco of the Super Base Armada Optimus Prime toy, "Powerlinx" Optimus Prime sports the darker color scheme the character takes on in the Armada cartoon episode "Origin" following a Mini-Con power-up, but he is not precisely show-accurate—the deco would later be fine-tuned with more accurate details for release in Japan as the Magna Convoy DX giftset (see below). In addition to now sporting fully-mobile Super Mode arms without the movement-impeding tabs, Prime still comes with all his features and accessories, though for this release, his Mini-Con partner Sparkplug got retooled with a new rear chassis and a blinged-out golden chrome body as "Corona Sparkplug".
In the animated series, Optimus Prime was originally in the Autobot Academy and friends with Sentinel Prime and Elita One. When Elita is lost on a planet dominated by giant spider-like aliens, he blames himself for leaving her behind, where she supposedly dies in the explosion of a wrecked Decepticon warship loaded with Energon. Sentinel doesn't forgive him for losing her and Optimus takes full responsibly for Elita's demise. This caused Optimus Prime to wash out of the Autobot Academy. However, Ultra Magnus pulls some strings so that Optimus Prime could be captain of a strange Space Bridge repair crew composed of a war vet named Ratchet, a fledgling cadet named Bumblebee, and his fellow cadet Bulkhead. Optimus is given command of the starship which is the vehicle mode of Omega Supreme.
This new smaller mold of Optimus Prime features a similar transformation to the original toy. Unlike most transformable figures in this line, Optimus completely lacks 5mm fist holes. Compared to the finalized toy, the product photo on the back of the box has a number of deco differences, most notably silver thighs and white accents above the front windows in addition to those below. The same box photo and the more deco-accurate stock photo (right) also neglect to fold out his fists, which is the only other step in his two-step transformation.
The largest Action Master set, this incarnation of Optimus Prime is a non-transforming action figure which comes with the "Armored Convoy", a large, heavily armed tractor trailer. The cab of the truck transforms into a small jet that can seat one Action Master figure, while the trailer itself converts into a larger battle station with turrets that several Action Masters can man. The sculpt of the Prime figure itself is closely based on his character model, albeit with a coloration that seems to have been based at least partially on the small robot form of his Powermaster body.
In reorganizing the company, LEGO became more efficient. The data shows that they have been able to standardize costs and it is likely that they were able to hedge the price of plastic against future price fluctuations. In protecting their business, they have also been able to normalize prices for their customers. A stable price is good for everyone; it helps LEGO ensure that future production costs are budgeted for and it helps the consumer manage their budget. This allows LEGO to protect and grow its market share.
A Mega Super Collection Figure of Prime in his "normal mode" was released a few months after the first figure. He came with a translucent blue Star Saber, and a much larger version of the Convoy Gun accessory, creating a sense of comparative scale, even though he's the same height as the Super Mode figure. Like the Super Mode figure, only his right fist has a peg-hole in it, so he can't hold both weapons at once.
Part of the first wave of battle upgrade Hero Mashers toys, Optimus is a non-transforming robot who can swap any of his parts out with other Hero Mashers figure to create many combinations. He includes his iconic Energon axe, a large projectile-launching gun, another large gun, two missile packs, and an arm for Ultra Magnus. Optimus Prime also has a pointing right hand, which allows you to do a certain Optimus Prime pose in a Dreamwave Productions comic.
Of particular note to Prime completists is that this otherwise traditional reissue of the Generation One Prime cab has a brand-new head sculpt which is essentially a miniaturisation of the Masterpiece/20th Anniversary Prime's noggin. Not only does this give the "classic" Prime toy a more show-accurate head, it's also the first iteration of this familiar mould in which the head is actually poseable. Being one of the better-articulated early Generation One toys, Prime can finally look in any direction he can aim.
Naturally, Optimus Prime got the biggest of the sets in the first year of Kre-O. The set can be built into a large long-nose tractor-trailer rig with a removable "sleeper" cab that hides a computer station, and a trailer that can carry the set's two motorcycles or open up to carry larger car builds. The robot mode build includes a huge Optimus, based largely on the live-action movie Optimus, though with a head based almost directly on the Classics Voyager Optimus. He is armed with a distressingly plain brick that fires pressure-launched missiles (aka his smokestacks). Most of the leftover parts in robot mode become a "headquarters" which is mostly just a random assemblage of mismatched-color panels and a pair of barricades. Both main builds leave numerous parts unused if you go expressly by the instructions, but hey, it's a building kit, surely you can find someplace to apply most of them.
The sequel series, Transformers: Generation 2, began an undisclosed period of time later. At the beginning of the series, Prime was restored to a form resembling his original body. He and the Transformers found themselves caught in the schemes of a new generation of Cybertronians, led by the icy Jhiaxus, who were colonizing and cyber-forming other worlds. Plagued by nightmarish visions of a life-destroying entity called "the Swarm", Prime looked into Cybertron's past and discovered that Jhiaxus and his kind were the result of an unintentional Transformer reproduction. Their nature and intent, he found, was distilled to the purest, most unemotional form of conquest and that the Swarm was the by-product of this process. To fight this new enemy, Prime and the Autobots entered into an alliance with the recreated Megatron's Decepticons. Though Prime was eventually consumed by the abomination and destroyed, he was able to unleash the energies of the Matrix into the Swarm, purifying it. In parting, the Swarm recreated Prime in a new form, and he and Megatron set out to lead the united Autobots and Decepticons into a new age.
Another Hasbro release of the MP-10 mold, which is basically a reissue of the 2010 Transformers line's Masterpiece Optimus Prime, but with the Japanese release's ID Number. Surprisingly he is NOT mistransformed on the initial official photography... until secondary stock photos had the vehicle mode slightly mistransformed. Unlike the original, Hasbro version, this version features silver paint on the interior of the trailer. This version also removes the red paint on the die cast hinge piece in his body and replaces it with blue paint. Sadly, this figure doesn't come with the Key to Vector Sigma. Due to compact packaging, the trailer is prone to scuffing.
Part of a cross-promotion between Toyota and TakaraTomy, the deluxe-sized FJ Optimus Prime transforms into an FJ Cruiser, with his axe weapon becoming the vehicle's spare tire. The vehicle mode's body panels come packaged on the sprue, and can then be clipped onto the core figure. The mass retail release of FJ Optimus includes yellow and white panels, whilst further color variations were available when purchasing an FJ Cruiser at Japanese Toyota dealerships. As is typical of TakaraTomy exclusives, these variants came in grayscale packaging.
Part of the third wave of Prime Cyberverse Commander Class toys, Nightwatch Optimus Prime is a redeco of Series 2 Cyberverse Optimus Prime, using the faceplate-less head sculpt that is gang-molded with the original head. His blue plastic is now gray, his smokestacks and thighs are left unpainted, he loses the Autobot insignia on his right forearm/door, and he gains yellow paint highlights for his eyes and lights, along with various other minor deco differences. Instead of the original release's cannons, he now comes with a pair of swords, which each have a pair of 3mm posts for wielding/mounting.
Main event time! Nitro figures are more like your traditional Generations/Power of the Primes deluxe bots. Standing at 7-inches, they feature increased detail, additional paint applications and all come with a core to unlock additional features. In addition to Barricade, Optimus Prime, and VW Bumblebee (this one’s my favorite of the entire line), the Nitro series will also have a Camaro ‘Bee.
Thanks to TFW2005 user Fc203, we have some screencaps from what appears to be a stop-motion review video featuring Studio Series Shatter, among other Transformers and non-Transformers toys. The screencaps give us a good look at her robot and alt mode as well as a few poses. Like her partner Dropkick, Shatter only comes with one alt mode. However, that alt mode is her car mode and not her aircraft mode; whereas Dropkick is the opposite. She also seems to be sporting a bit more of a generic head that isn’t quite movie-accurate, but the rest of the figure seems to pay a good deal of homage to her pre-jet mode on-screen model.
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.
The Joes discovered a cavern where the people of Cobra-La were growing metal-eating spores as a last defense against Unicron. Flint and Cosmos took a load of the spores into space just as Unicron appeared in Earth orbit. Prime, Hawk and Colton headed deeper into Cobra-La to rescue Firewall and kick butt. Prime was tackled and pinned by a giant bug creature, but made a dramatic recovery and tossed the bug aside. He then took the machine-hating Cobra-La leader Golobulus to task with a single punch. Flint and Cosmos released the spores, which devoured Unicron from the inside and defeated the giant Transformer before he could harm Earth.
Hot on the heels of their licensing deals with Pepsi and Nike, TakaraTomy got themselves a slice of Apple™ pie and released Convoy —playing iPod speaker— as part of their small, musically-themed Music Label line. This version of Prime is an all-white redeco of the original Generation 1 cab robot, which (much like the "Marine Version" of Prime from the Sports Label line) makes it seem like he ought to be Ultra Magnus. The figure is actually even derived from the retool of the mold created for the original Ultra Magnus figure, as distinguished by the elongated hubcap pegs on the front wheels. Like Pepsi Prime before it, the figure's fists now store in peg holes on the under side of its trailer. The toy lacks any of the original Prime's stickers (even the silver stripe on his chest is now a paint operation) and includes the original thick-barrelled version of Prime's blaster. The toy features a brand new headsculpt based on the 20th Anniversary Prime figure, given additional poseability not previously seen on the figure by being mounted on a ball joint.
Surely one of the strangest examples of licensed Transformers products, Sports Label Convoy transforms into a shoe. Something of a shellformer, this baffling incarnation of Prime is colored primarily white and red in his alt mode of a realistic-looking (if notably undersized) Nike Free 7.0 sneaker, complete with gratuitously long real fabric shoelaces. In robot mode, he is made instantly recognizable by his incorporation of some additional blue and silver in predictable areas, and a traditionally Prime-styled head. Less traditionally, and somewhat perversely, Prime's feet are sculpted in the likeness of his own sneaker mode, making it seem like he's wearing himself!
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.
The Transformers Adventure Easy Dynamic Series release, titled "Big Optimus Prime", features extra paint details and has two additional Autobot symbols on his shoulders. He also includes a different scannable badge, which is compatible with TakaraTomy's Transformers Adventures app. Scanning this will unlock Big Optimus Prime in the collection list. Unlike the American release, Big Optimus Prime is packaged in a windowed box, instead of an an open package.
Golden Lagoon Convoy is a gold and gold chrome redeco of MP-10 in homage of the original cartoon episode of the same name. He retains his energon axe, ion blaster, and Matrix of Leadership. Part of TakaraTomy's 35th anniversary celebration, he was initially released at Summer Wonder Festival 2018, then later through Cybertron Satellite stores across Japan and TakaraTomy Mall.
As he and Prowl discussed the wisdom of evacuating, a huge explosion obliterated the Forum of Enlightenment. Optimus led a team there, realising that the destruction was a message from Megatron. Leaving his team, he ventured underground, encountering Shrapnel, who blasted him into a pit. The War Within #2 Exploring the underground, Prime had a strange vision of a transparent version of himself, which warned that he had to grasp Cybertron's significance. Then he was attacked by Soundwave and the Insecticons, whom he was able to easily best by using the labyrinthine environment to his advantage. He then felt himself led to a confrontation against Megatron, and both faction leaders met atop of a bridge, overlooking a deep abyss. Starscream blasted the bridge Optimus and Megatron were standing on, plunging them into the chasm. The War Within #3 Recovering, Prime heard another disembodied voice telling him about Cybertron. Before he could look for a way out, Megatron found him, and informed him about the true nature of the Matrix, telling Optimus how it could be used to power Cybertron's planetary engines, transforming it into a space-faring war-world. This spurred Optimus to fight back, but before long, Megatron took control of the battle, smashing his fist into Prime's chest to get at the Matrix. A blaze of light enveloped the pair, who found themselves abruptly on 20th century Earth. The War Within #4
Multiple reports suggest that the toy suffers from a design flaw, inferior plastic quality, or both: Due to his hands having peg-holes that are a bit too small to accommodate 5mm posts, they have a tendency to show stress marks on the inside after pegging his sword handle (or most other pegs) inside. Stress marks also tend to appear near his tiny hinged wrists. Fortunately, there have been no reports of the hands actually breaking on either location thus far.
Released exclusively in Japan, Bumblebee Legendary Optimus Prime is an all-new Leader Class mold, taking many cues from the Age of Extinction Evasion Mode Optimus Prime mold. His head can also switch into either maskless or masked faces. He also comes with an Ion Blaster, which can be pegged on his 5mm compatible hands and can store on his back. His truck mode can tow Convoy's (MP-10) trailer.