Available only via mail-order through Dengeki Hobby magazine, this black and gray redeco of Optimus is one of four "Black Body" promotional Robot Masters toys made available through different outlets simultaneously. He came with his normal accessories (it is worth noting his axe was solid silver), plus a chromed-gold clear-red-plastic version of Psycho-Orb's "Calamity Defenser" solitarium shield.

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Asia Premium Series Optimus Prime Ultimate Edition is an extensive screen-accurate redeco of Jetwing Optimus Prime (with a maskless head from Buster Optimus Prime), this figure features loads of accessories from the Striker & Jetwing figures, and includes brand-new knuckle and battle hooks based on the HFTD Optimus', which can be installed in either hand. The figure lacks the chrome of previous releases, instead opting for silver paint. The pin-striping is also absent, but he does have painted pupils. The figure also features 2-2-1 articulated fingers, which the first Leader Class did not have due to budget cuts. The ion cannon included lacks the black paint application, leaving it completely silver. When purchased from select retailers, this toy will also include a shiny metal number plate and a bonus mini AllSpark cube accessory. His instructions depict a weaponised mode which has some clearance issues, as his Gatling guns are shown attached to the jetwing, which pushes against his arms. His Eliminator Gun and Assault Blaster cannot tab into the Gatling gun tightly either.
In the event that Windcharger successfully turned the Decepticons’ forcefield off, reinforcements burst into the base just as Megatron was strike Optimus from behind. A wayward shot from Megatron then revealed the location of the gravity gun to the Autobots. Optimus ordered his troops to charge the weapon. Hook caught Optimus in the gravity gun’s sights, and sent the Autobot leader floating upwards.
I you can get an official reissue for around the same price, do it. I lucked out and got an opened but mint Encore for $50 last week but you'll be getting lucky that way. All Hasbro reissues have short smokestacks and long stacks are harder to get separate to swap out. Average price for a Japanese reissue is around $100 opened. If you are on a budget and the kid doens't care about slight issues, the $40 KO would be the better option.
The figure features newly redesigned hip ratchets to make both robot and combiner mode stable, which were also installed in both TakaraTomy's Motormaster, Grand Scourge, and a revision wave of Hasbro's Motormaster. The pegs that Legends Class Rodimus (or Blackjack) attach to have also been slightly modified to provide a tighter fit, making the latter toy much less prone to falling out.
Beast Wars: Transformers had to be renamed in some countries, particularly Canada, because of concern over the word "war" in the title. So, in some countries, it was released under the title Beasties. Long-time Transformers fans noticed the prominence of the words "Beast Wars" over "Transformers", the latter appearing in small type under the former. The Transformers' fan base splintered into two groups as a direct result, with the one enjoying Beast Wars for what it was and the other refusing to accept it as official canon in the Transformers mythology.
Outstanding work here. After reading a number of complaints about how the price has ‘increased’ over the years, it’s great to see this analytical approach. One additional hypothesis I have is related to the increase in the number of sets released each year, which would appear to be supported by your data. More sets to buy to be ‘complete’ makes for more money out of pocket.
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. Ultra Magnus, who had high hopes for him, expels him and thus bars him from any position of the Elite Guard. However, Magnus pulls some strings so that Optimus could be captain of a strange Space Bridge repair crew composed of an old grumbler of a war vet named Ratchet, a fledgling Bumblebee, and his fellow cadet, Bulkhead. Optimus is given command of the starship Omega Supreme.
The Transformers Animated series was broadcast internationally in 2008 except in Japan, where it aired in 2010. This new series uses a very different art-style from the previous series. The Autobots and Decepticons, while fighting in space for possession of the Allspark, crash-landed onto a futuristic Earth and resume their battle after laying dormant for years. In addition to the Decepticons, the Autobots have to face the human villains as well. Classic characters such as Optimus Prime, Bumblebee, Prowl, Starscream, Megatron, Jazz and Ultra Magnus appear in this series.
Voyager Optimus Prime is a redeco of the toy from the first movie's toyline. Like several redecos or retools of 2007 movie toys, there has been some effort to make this release noticeably different from the previous releases, though the toy ends up looking less accurate to the actual movie appearance than those previous releases. Optimus Prime has a sort of faded Autobot logo on the side of the truck's bunk, and kanji (Chinese characters) on the roof (ending up on his knee in robot mode.) The word "上海将军" means "Shanghai General", while "大将" means "Grand general".
French die-cast model producers Majorette teamed with Kabaya to produce the Transformers Mini Car Collection, a line of Armada-themed die-cast vehicles, all of which were redecos of pre-existing Majorette toys. Prime was a redeco of Majorette toy #256—a long-nosed tow truck—in his traditional red and blue, now bearing the Autobot insignia, the Micron Legend logo, and an image of the Autobot leader on its hood. The toy came with a pack of gum.
Take one part bicycle, two pages out of the Flintstones automobile design book and one hard-spoiled child and you have a pedal car. It seems like a really fun idea in theory but, in actuality, the single-speed gearing of a bike mixed with the weight of the metal shell, seats and wheels meant operation of the thing bordered on child labor. Still, the pedal car remained very sought after for generations to come.

Prime's trailer unfolds via a spring-loaded transformation mechanism in a battle station that is positively bristling with varied weaponry. In addition to the disc launcher, it is armed with a "ripple-fire" missile launcher that fires five missiles, an air-powered rocket launcher like the one previously seen on Hero Optimus Prime, and a small laser cannon that mounts on the base's main tower. Both the missile launcher and laser cannon can disconnect and be held by Prime; his LED-fist will illuminate the laser cannon like it does his sword. Additional missiles and a second rocket are stored in grooves inside the sides of the trailer.


Although the animated series ended in the U.S. after The Rebirth, Optimus Prime continued to appear in animated sequences of Transformers toy commercials, progressing from Powermaster to Action Master. He even made an appearance as a computer-generated Combat Hero. Many episodes of the series were re-aired to promote Transformers: Generation 2. During these sequences, computer-generated scenes featuring key G1 characters are borrowed from Generation 2 commercials to serve as opening, closing, and commercial bumpers. Optimus Prime is shown in the opening and closing fighting Generation 2's Ramjet.
Based on his appearance in War for Cybertron, Generations Optimus Prime transforms from a red, blue, and silver robot into an "armored truck mode." He comes with a hand-held rifle that is held via either of its two 5mm posts, and can fold up to store in either mode. He features additional 5mm ports on his forearms, roof, and front-wheel panels. Optimus has a stylized sculpted Autobot insignia on his back, as seen in the game, but it is obscured by kibble.
The bio for the Botcon 2015 version of Megatron reveals that he comes from an alternate reality where Megatron achieved victory during events similar to Dark of the Moon and killed both Optimus and Sentinel Prime. However, Rodimus Prime then arose to challenge him, facing him in a battle that Megatron ultimately chose to flee, resulting in him ending up in the Axiom Nexus.
Prime's firing missile and Mini-Con activated gimmicks remain accessible in this mode, but look a bit doofy if you deploy them. The initial Hasbro release of Prime had tabs in its Super Mode shoulders that prevented them from rotating above the horizontal default position, so as not to break the wires that run through the toy's right arm. Coupled with the limited elbow joints, this left Optimus Prime able only to point his weapons towards the ground, and the tabs were removed on subsequent editions of the figure.
An extensive redeco of the Protoform Optimus Prime mold that was exclusively available at the Japanese C3xHobby Convention in August of 2007, and later offered by e-Hobby in limited quantities. Most of the body is made out of transparent turquoise plastic in order to mimic its frozen state in the "coldness" of space, while orange paint is used on the front end of the "entry" mode, mimicking the heat effects of sudden atmospheric entry. The flame attachment is made out of clear blue plastic, with the tail end being covered in gold paint.

The mold suffers from a minor design oversight, wherein the rear Nissan badge collides with his left leg strut when the left foot is hinged over and pegged into a clear plastic socket during transformation, with the results being that the connection is slightly crooked, isn't very secure, and sometimes pops off, and that the crooked pegging often causes the socket to crack.
A heavy retool of Combiner Wars Ultra Magnus, this Optimus Prime is based on the Powermaster Optimus Prime toy from 1988. Despite this, Hi-Q (now renamed 'Autobot Apex', presumably for trademark reasons) doesn't form the engine on Prime's chest; instead, he transforms into a de-faceplated version of the original Powermaster Optimus Prime cab robot head, over which a helmet slides during transformation to complete the Powermaster Prime look. In all three of Optimus Prime's modes are various pegs and seats with which Titan Master figures can interact. Like other Leader Class figures, his base mode can connect to other Titan Returns figures with base modes.
After the film, in season three, Rodimus did not have time to rest on his laurels as commander, immediately finding himself and the Autobots targeted by the Quintessons, who lured him to their planet of Quintessa and detonated it in hopes of destroying the Matrix. Rodimus and the Autobots survived, however, and Rodimus proceeded to voluntarily short-circuit himself to allow his life-force to enter the Matrix, feeling that the answer to the mystery of the Quintessons' identity lay within it. His hunch proved correct – the Quintessons, he discovered, were the Transformers' creators, and Rodimus knew that the future would be a difficult time for the Autobots.
The figure's transformation scheme is based on the original G1 figure, the only differences being that the fists are not removed but become the headlights, and instead of flipping backwards inside the chest, Diablock Convoy's noggin flips forwards with the aid of sideways-opening windows, akin to Masterpiece Prime. A "laser rifle" in the shape of his ion cannon can be built from black bricks, and stickers bearing the Autobot faction symbol can be placed on Diablock Convoy's shoulders, although this is not recommended as it is designed to permanently stick to multiple tiles which dislodge easily and may damage the sticker.
The internet can be blamed for the size and scope of the secondary LEGO market. On the website, BrickLink, you can find almost any set that LEGO has ever produced. In addition, the site keeps records of trends in the market and value of individual pieces. This site is invaluable to a LEGO collector and has given many the ability to grow their collections. Before the advent of this site and sites like eBay, collecting LEGO required going to garage sales. There are now whole sites dedicated to buying LEGO as an investment, but that is a topic for another article.

There are two versions of the voice changer helmet with two different pre-recorded voices. An earlier release features a voice similar to Garry Chalk, while the later release features the voice of Peter Cullen. The latter version has modified packaging under the 'Try Me!' blurb, stating it has 'Real Movie Voice!', though the updated version has also appeared in the original packaging without the 'Real Movie Voice!' notice.
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.
A single-packed version of the battle damaged Voyager Optimus Prime toy from the Sam's Club exclusive three-pack. Although the assortment number and the general packaging style (which are both the same also used for the Premium Series redecos of Voyager Class Autobot Ratchet and Megatron) seemed to indicate that this might be a Best Buy exclusive, it was later confirmed to be an "international market" exclusive. It was released in Hasbro's Southeast Asian markets, but was not available in the USA outside the Sam's Club three-pack.
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.
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.
Optimus Prime can also combine with Leader-class Jetfire to form Jetpower Optimus Prime by slightly transforming his backpack and feet. Sadly, this takes away from his leg articulation, because otherwise he could never support the massive backpack he has in this mode. However, fans have created alternate configurations that increase leg articulation and movie-accuracy.

Replacing the weapons of the Hasbro releases, these new Mini-Cons transform into their larger parnter's signature weapons. They came as unassembled, unpainted model kits, similarly using stickers to fill in details. Several Arms Microns also came by themselves in bagged kits, plus there was a metric ton of promotional Microns throughout the line, possibly more than any prior line (even Micron Legend!), and that's not counting the ones that were released during the First Edition series. The Arms Microns also had multiple 5 mm posts and holes, and could be combined into super weapons, plus the larger toys were retooled to have new Arms Micron mounting points.

On Cybertron, Optimus Prime kicked back to do a little bit of paperwork and reminisce. With Shockwave defeated, Cybertron was enjoying a new era of peace. He was interrupted by Hot Rod, who reported that a group of "pesky humans with their peashooters" were giving an Autobot team on Earth a hard time. Prime suspected Cobra's involvement and counseled Hot Rod not to be so dismissive of the humans. The Art of War #1 When the team returned to Cybertron and mysteriously vanished in the Gladiator Zone, Prime was prepared to go search for them, but was convinced by Hot Rod to stay behind and organize a peace ceremony. The Art of War #2
As part of the Robot Replicas line, this version of Optimus is a non-transforming action figure that utilizes Revoltech-style jointing. The sculpt hews much closer to the movie CGI model than is possible with the full transforming toys, plus the universal jointing of the line allows for his forearm to be replaced with his hand-cannon... or bits from other Robot Replicas.
This series introduced the dangerous Predacon faction, robotic dragons and mythical creatures that posed a threat to Autobot and Decepticon alike. In response, the 'Bots and 'Cons don new armor (the Autobots in spiky, over-weaponized armor reminiscent of Mad Max, while the Decepticons take on more beastly traits) and are armed with new gimmick-laden launching/spinning weapons. On-package bios were reduced in length to just a sentence or two, and the instruction sheets instead feature facts about one of the figure's main weapons, as well as a chapter of the Tales of the Beast Hunters prose story.
The other new additions were two black spring-loaded missile launchers that fire red projectiles. In vehicle mode, these attached to the soundbox (an echo of Powermaster Optimus Prime's cannons, perhaps), and could be held in Optimus Prime's fists in robot mode. These launchers were not created for Prime; they were retooled versions of the launcher from Barricade of the G.I. Joe line.
1. Color diversity: Back in the 80s, most sets were comprised of a few basic colors; red, blue, yellow, white, gray, and black. It was much easier to acquire a “critical mass” of pieces in each color to start building one’s own creations in coherent color schemes. Space, Town, Castle sets all had the same basic colors. Today Lego uses a much wider array of colors in their sets. While this adds a lot of variety and visual appeal to today’s sets, this means that one has to buy a much larger number of sets (or scour bricklink) to get achieve a workable critical mass of pieces in each color. After buying some of the modern sets, I end up with a few dark-blue or lime-green pieces that I don’t really have enough to much with other than use as accent colors. They end up in my misc color bin in the event I decide to build the set they originally came with or sell them off on bricklink.
Produced as an action figure by the Japanese company Kaiyodo, the main selling point of the line is the 'Revolver' joint. This gives the figure a high degree of articulation, allowing for many dynamic and varied poses. Hot Rodimus is number 047 in the Yamaguchi series, and comes with extra sets of hands, a pair of pistols, an extra head (which is molded with his binocular vision, as seen in The Transformers: The Movie) and a display stand.
As Megatron explained that the Matrix was giving them a vision of the future, they witnessed themselves battling on Sherman Dam. The nature of their surroundings established, Megatron resumed the scheduled beating, but a series of setting shifts ended with Optimus reunited with Grimlock. Grimlock handed Prime a sword and suggested he finish Megatron for good. The War Within #5 Optimus found Megatron again, engaging him in combat and announcing that he was playing the game by Megatron's rules now—without mercy. Though he did not slay Megatron, he inflicted enough damage onto him to expunge from his memory the visions the Matrix had granted him. A short time later, Optimus joined the other Autobots in attacking the Decepticons who were trying to use Cybertron's planetary engines. Grimlock was finally impressed with Prime. Thanks to the combined efforts of Optimus and Grimlock's squad, the Decepticons were driven away and the engines were destroyed before they could tear the planet apart. Afterwards, Optimus's group arrived back at Iacon to find it destroyed. Optimus announced the Autobots were no longer evacuating the planet and threw away the Golden Disk full of the knowledge of his predecessors which the council had given him, saying he would choose his own course. The War Within #6
Hero Optimus Prime was the first new-mold Optimus Prime toy in the Generation 2 line. He transforms into a Kenworth truck of unknown model with a flatbed trailer. The truck and trailer form his robot mode, but cannot disconnect. His primary gimmick is an air-powered missile launcher that uses an air bellows attached by hose to launch his large, hollow, soft-rubber-tipped missiles. The bellows and missiles attach to his back in robot mode. His rifle plugs into the launcher's main body in truck mode.
This Japanese-exclusive reissue of the original Generation 1 Optimus Prime figure featured tinted blue windows, like those sported by the "Goodbye Convoy" edition of the toy, as well as show-accurate blue eyes. Prime came with all his original accessories, including both versions of his rifle, as well as a new die-cast metal Matrix of Leadership accessory, which could be looped around his neck on a removable chain. Additionally, the set included a show-accurate redeco of the Action Master Optimus Prime figure, a sheet of Autobot insignia stickers of varying sizes, and a mouse pad decorated with the Autobot symbol.
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