Standing only two-and-a-quarter inches tall, Smallest Transforming Transformers Optimus Prime was the smallest fully transforming G1 Optimus toy for a while, at least until the release of his chubby super-deformed Q-Transformers versions. He features an accurate transformation sequence based on the original full-sized toy, replacing the detachable hands with actual sculpted fists, and even including a tiny version of his laser rifle. Unsurprisingly, he also has little articulation and is only capable of moving his arms and legs.
Really great, well-researched article. I think you hit the nail on the head here – the fact that there are more expensive sets than ever before affects perception. Also, I’m pretty sure the presence of a baseplate (light but large) in the old sets made them seem bigger. I don’t like the lack of baseplates in new sets – it does make them seem smaller.
The Reveal the Shield Legends Prime mold was redecoed again for the inclusion in the second EZ Collection wave. This version of the figure replaces his blue on the head with black, and the blue paint on the legs is stripped off, revealing the black plastic underneath. and like the Megatron redeco in the same wave, features a Generation 2 Autobot symbol instead of a Generation 1 insignia.
Sure enough, in 2009, when the Hytherion's colossal claw-marks appeared on planets throughout the solar system, Prime's other-dimensional incarnation returned, bringing with him a "Vibrant Red" Vector 109 auto-avatar with which Prime fused. In that instant, he was reborn as part of the Alternity, a manifold being who encompassed all the different incarnations of Optimus Prime through the multiverse at once. Prime reached his hands heavenward and peeled back the layers of reality, exposing the gargantuan fanged maw of the Hytherion looming above the Autobots. From Here to Alternity

This occurs in a Japanese toy line, animated series, and mobile video game called Q-Transformers. Specifically, the video game is called Q-Transformers: Mystery of Convoy Returns. Both Bumblebee and Optimus Prime are able to switch between their Generation 1 and movie modes in the series and game-- specifically Q-Transformers: Mystery of Convoy Returns. Strangely, though, when he’s in Generation 1 mode, he’s not a Volkswagen but another small, quirky car: a Daihatsu Copen. The show is pretty meta, with the characters being aware that they’re toys and they even talk about the Mystery of Convoy video game that they’re in.
While Transformers ended poorly for the US market, the same can not be said for the UK, Canada, and Japan markets as they went on to produce their own continuing series between 1991 and 1993, despite the UK market in particular missing a substantial amount of figures prominent in the comics and animated series throughout the line's run. Each country produced their own continuity. The UK and Canada continued with new Action Master figures and introduced the Turbo Masters and Predators. Japan continued with the Micromasters concept.
After the Great War, Optimus Prime disappeared with other legends into the mysterious location on Cybertron dubbed J'nwan, where Optimus himself became the "Authority" who spoke on behalf of the others. Sandstorm, the leader of a rebellion in a 32nd-century firmly under the heel of the tyrannical Shokaract, entered J'nwan to plead with the heroes of Cybertron's past for aid. He hoped to convince them to join the fight against the Predacon warlord. After a mind-crushing journey which left all of his companions dead or deranged, Sandstorm finally found an audience with the Authority and his brethren, but they declined to help, with the Authority stating that their time was past and the war was no longer their war. The Authority then in some way manipulated Sandstorm's trip out of J'nwan such that it was comparatively short and simple. Paradox
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 Exprime's electronics are slightly less complex than those of Kenzan and Gekisoumaru. In robot, dragon, and train modes, pressing a button sets off red flashing LEDs and causes him to play one of seven sounds or phrases (which do not change depending on the mode). Pressing and holding the button activates a combination mode similar to the ones found in Kenzan and Gekisoumaru. Optimus Exprime calls on Kenzan and Gekisoumaru to combine with him, and then combination music plays as the LEDs flash blue, purple, and red (with the two halves of his Autobot insignia showing different colors!). Completing either combination by snapping the correct kabuto helmet into place ends the combination mode and triggers another phrase.

The Beast Wars raged on prehistoric Earth, eventually leading to the discovery of the buried Ark sometime after its crash on prehistoric Earth. Megatron, following his namesake's instructions in a desperate gambit, decided to attempt to change history by killing Prime, who was still lying in the Ark in stasis lock. Megatron hoped that this would result in the Decepticons winning the Great War and eventually Predacon control of Cybertron. Megatron unleashed a full-power weapon blast at Optimus Prime's face, near-fatally injuring him. The Agenda (Part III) However, Optimus Primal proceeded to take Prime's spark into his body to protect it from surgical trauma while his injuries were repaired. The subsequent power increase caused by Prime's spark's connection to the Matrix mutated Primal into a large, Transmetal "Optimal Optimus" form. Then, with the repairs complete, Prime's spark was restored, and he briefly activated before sinking back into normal stasis. Optimal Situation

The First Edition Voyagers were never released in the US, forcing buyers to import him from Canada or Japan... at first. ToysЯUs later picked up this toy, along with most of the "First Edition" line, as part of a huge block of US market exclusives for holiday season 2012. This second run introduced a deco variant, in which the red paint on, beside, and below the truck side windows is omitted, revealing the patch of brown plastic underneath. As he is packaged in robot mode, with his front wheels and shoulders covering said patch, the only way to identify which version is which while in the box is by looking at the hinge joints beside his two painted torso lights, with the center portions of the hinges being unpainted brown on the variant. All releases of this mold also have a minor issue with the truck mode windvane/robot mode heels refusing to connect solidly to the truck cab in vehicle mode, leaving a visible gap above Prime's windshield.
The use of a G1-based Orion Pax design and an Aligned-based Optimus Prime design with Movie Optimus Prime packaging art makes it hard to know where on the wiki this should go, but given the general movie-themed bent of the Tribute line, we're putting it here. Continuing the tradition, the 2-pack was first released in some Asian countries like Taiwan without any prior announcement from Hasbro itself. A few months after the 2-pack's release, Tribute Optimus Prime & Orion Pax saw worldwide release through Amazon, including an Amazon Japan listing bearing a The Last Knight ID number.
Hot Rod first appeared in the American animated series during the events of The Transformers: The Movie (as a main protagonist), where he was one of the many Autobots stationed at Autobot City.[5] He was first seen fishing with Daniel Witwicky. When Daniel saw the shuttle that was going to make a supply run to Autobot City, he told Hot Rod and together they both went to an observation point, only to see a hole in the shuttle. The ship had been previously hijacked by Decepticon forces led by Megatron, with its crew killed.
Brian Colin, Peter Smyth, Mark Buffington, Josh H., Propelstalz, Mary Crocker, Wayne Moulton Jr, Mitch Gross, Jim Valko, Andrew Brown, Lucy Ravitch, Nicholas Duresky, Heather Hofshi, John Kemp, Thorsten Karge, Natasha Dzurny, Keith Ives, Benjamin Chan, Neal Bhatnagar, Justin Farr, Regan Lee, Elaine, Nate Fugal, Stephanie Tennison, Jon Rasmussen, Ryan Pulis, Owen Duffy, Colman Reilly, Anthony, Mark Richman, Alexis Ohanian, Steve, Greg “TVsEgon” Skinner, Andy Saavedra, Daniel, Willie Raymond Taylor III, Chad Ingham, Irene Christian, Clinton Richmond, Jamey Stegmaier, James Allenspach, John Howell, Leif Terry, Tiago Pereira, Nathan Heath, Grinidon, Roman, Berserker Hew, Clark Stacey, Ben Harkins, Kayvaan Ghassemieh, Travis B., Justin Myers, Magna Nordgard, Jim Griffin, Jeff, David Smith, Matthew Titelbaum, Dennis Hitzeman, Daniel Lieske, Michael Jantze, Ruddy, Tom Damico, Kelson, Michelangelo Grigni

A redeco of Cybertronian Optimus Prime with a translucent red front section, additional (painted) "scratched paint" details, some red paint highlights either omitted or changed to yellow and additional yellow circuitry pattern detailing reminiscent of the jammed abilities/mode lock/EMP effect from the War for Cybertron game, available in a Toys"R"Us-exclusive three-pack with redecos of Cybertronian Megatron and Cybertronian Bumblebee.
In 2007, the Optimus Prime of universal stream Primax 109.0 Beta encountered a mysterious messenger from another world: another incarnation of himself from a parallel dimension who left him with a warning. Two years hence, Megatron would bring the terrifying super-dimensional lifeform known as the "Beast of Time", the Hytherion, into their dimension to destroy Earth. The only thing that could battle the Hytherion was the power of the super-evolved multi-dimensional race of Cybertronians known as the Alternity. Prime agreed that when the danger appeared, he would join the Alternity in the fight.
If he didn't send Sludge with them, the odds were 2 to 1 that the Autobots would all be destroyed as part of Operation Black Coral. The one possible positive outcome ended with Optimus fighting a duel against Megatron atop Mount Lomas in which Prime (somehow) split into his three components to surround his archenemy. This provoked Rumble into "assisting" his leader with an earthquake that destroyed the Decepticons' entire superfuel operation.

Optimus Prime would also be a major character in Devil's Due Publishing's various G.I. Joe meets the Transformers series. Devil's Due Publishing does not address Prime's early years, save that he survived an assassination attempt by Bludgeon soon after receiving the Matrix. The traditional Ark storyline left the transformers crashed on Earth. In this series, instead of being reactivated by the Ark, the transformers and the ark were discovered by the terrorist organization called Cobra. The transformers inside were reformatted into Cobra vehicles, remotely controlled by the Televipers. Prime was turned into a Cobra Sentry Missile System tank, which was a 1985 Sears store exclusive red repaint of the HISS tank.[14] After an attack on a U.N. summit in Washington D.C., Optimus was able to get a message to Wheeljack, alerting G.I. Joe to where the Cobra base was hidden. Subsequently, he and the other captive Autobots and Decepticons broke free. After the ensuing battle, Optimus fought and defeated his enemy Megatron. After Megatron's defeat, the transformers returned to Cybertron in a second Ark Class vessel, but not before giving their human allies the ability to build and use mecha based on Transformers technology.
In 2002, 3H secured the official Transformers convention license as well as licenses to produce comic books and start a fan club. Optimus Prime appeared in Transformers Collectors Club comics, a comic released by 3H enterprises. In the comic, he is the same Optimus Prime from the Robots in Disguise continuity, but is taken to the Transformers: Universe reality.
This Japanese e-Hobby exclusive is a redeco of Targetmaster Kup, made to represent the character [[Optimus Prime#The Transformers cartoon|Orion Pax]] from the cartoon episode War Dawn. He transforms into a Cybertronic pickup-truck thing. His truck bed has a peg-hole to mount his partner Barrelroller, who also serves as a hand-held weapon. The set also came with a re-deco of Wheelie as Dion.
Part of the first assortment of "Custom Kreons", this version of Optimus Prime comes with a buildable parts rack on which to hang/store his many many extra pieces. His tampographs are much more heavily-detailed than the original Kreons, based on the original Optimus Prime toy. His "normal" helmet (and small sword) are chromed, plus he comes with an extra clear-plastic helmet, torso and legs. He also has a pair of extra arms (originally from the Kre-O Battleship aliens), plus a buildable large rifle, a buildable wing-pack, and a ray pistol (originally an Andorian blaster from Kre-O Star Trek).
There is one aspect not looked at in the price and that is the shift to model building vs. creation leading to a change in the utility of the pieces. I seem to need many more sets to get a useful variety of pieces these days as many of the sets contain a lot of pieces that are very specific to the needs of the set and are less useful when one wants to create their own designs. It would be a fascinating addition to rate each of the block types on its utility, perhaps by its prevalence in other sets, and then assess each set on its total utility score. So then the question is how many sets would you need to by to achieve different levels of utility and how has this changed over time.
Part of the first wave of Bot Shots Series 1 single-packs, Optimus Prime is a teeny little long-nosed semi truck with "trailer", with a spring-loaded automatic transformation to robot mode triggered when his front bumper is pressed. He has a "spinner" in his chest that shows his three attack types and power levels. His truck mode and robot body are influenced by the live-action Optimus Prime, while his head is taken from the original. His blue paint is light and sparkly-metallic, his red paint is dull matte, and his optics are yellow.
Unlike the other Swordbot toys, Optimus Exprime's kabuto helmets form an integral part of one of his alternate modes. The kabuto helmet designed for use with his DaiGekisou combination forms the head of his dragon form, while the kabuto helmet designed for use with his DaiKenzan combination forms the "tail" of the same. He comes with two HUGE swords (with 5mm handles) which can be attached to several places on his kabuto helmets or either alternate form, held separately in his hands, or held both in the same hand (with one held in reverse-grip).
Optimus Prime was subject to several molding and color variations in his early days. The earliest release of the figure featured larger fists, a gun with a thick, round barrel, a slightly-differently shaped gas pump, grey rockets, a grey Roller, a grey launcher in his Combat Deck, and metal plates in the floor of the Combat Deck (a holdover from the Diaclone version of the toy, to which the magnetic feet of the pilots could cling). In short order, his fists were slimmed down, the gun's barrel was pared down to a more slender form, the gas pump's shape was altered, the rockets and launcher were recast in black plastic, the metal plates were removed from the Combat Deck, and Roller's color was changed to a light blue. Along with Roller's color change, however, the Combat Deck's drone pod also became light blue, and a third running change soon followed that saw it restored to its original darker blue, and Roller changed along with it. These modified components would become the default accessories used by subsequent reissues of the Prime toy would take, though Roller stills fluctuates back and forth between grey and dark blue, depending on how show-accurate each reissue wants to be.
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