The smallest of the Energon Igniters, the 3-inch Speed series transforms between modes in 7 steps or less. Unlike previous small movie figures, this series has a lot of detailing and articulation. The bots don’t end up looking like carved blocks of plastic. They could use a few more paint apps, but that’s to be expected at this price point. They even interact with cores sold with the larger figures (though “interact” in this case seems to mean “tow behind”).
The figure has useful swivel joints at the shoulders and neck, and not-so-useful ones at the wrists and knees. It comes fully painted and pre-assembled, but true to his garage figure origins his Ion blaster must be cut free using a hobby knife, then assembled. His clear blue chest window piece is removable to allow the installation of his Matrix of Leadership, as is a Movie-style Matrix cover (not pictured). He also comes with an alternate hand that allow him to hold his accessories, as well as unpainted and uncut duplicates of his Matrix, hands and helmet, for some reason...
Toymaker Fischer Price was the knight in shining armor on this one with the creation of their Power Wheels line. At first, Power Wheels vehicles were very basic with small electric motors and rudimentary Jeep-like styling. Now, Fischer Price has unleashed a car that says "When I grow up, I want to be too rich to care about the environment." This giant bastard comes with tinted windows, a set of dubs and even a fully functional FM transmitter which, no doubt, blasts shitty radio static through its real-live rear subwoofers.
In Transformers vs. G.I. Joe comics, Bumblebee is offed as well. His ship is damaged during a space chase with Starscream, so he lands on Earth where G.I. Joe and Cobra are going at each other (as per usual). But his fatal mistake was helping G.I. Joe favorite Snake Eyes, who was trying to take on Starscream. In the process, Bumblebee got in the Joe-Cobra crossfire and was ripped apart by missiles. This wasn’t a true death, however. First, Starscream took Bee’s head to Megatron, who wore it on a necklace (yes, really), but eventually the head got back to the Autobots, who planted it back on his repaired body and he came back to life.
The Transformers: Prime toyline hit shelves in November 2011. Originally, Hasbro played coy with the series receiving a toyline at all, emphasizing that it was a television series first and foremost. There were initial plans to release a small assortment of three Deluxe figures (Bumblebee, Arcee, and Starscream) in the Generations line before they were moved into the expanded "First Edition" launch line.
Available exclusively at Hasbro Toy Shop and their booth at San Diego Comic-Con 2011, this version of Ultimate Optimus Prime is presented in vehicle mode, packaged into a large, foil-embossed bubble packaging (similar to late Alternators packaging) styled after Optimus Prime's trailer, with an additional foil-embossed sleeve styled after the hood of Optimus Prime's truck. Exclusive to this release is a set of stickers one can apply to the trailer. The toy itself is otherwise identical to the regular retail release.
The main difference is an extensive redeco, rendering Prime in his traditional colours instead of the iPod-inspired white. (Yes, it actually had more to do with iPods than Magnus, believe it or not.) Reminiscent of the Kiss Players, iPod Optimus Prime's entire ABS/PVC structure is painted over, including his fists and the silver stripe that runs along his chest. His wind shield is colored blue like the one in the 2002 New Years Convoy reissue. The silver-grey trailer has a fairly elaborate deco, featuring detailing that resembles the outward appearance of the traditional Prime trailer, including the doglegging blue stripe and Autobot symbol, an effect somewhat marred by the large, visible gap on one side. When reconfigured into dock mode, the interior surfaces surrounding the speakers are decorated with black-on-silver techno-patterns as well as three, count 'em, three logos proclaiming the name "Optimus Prime". The recessed space also features a stylised, almost Frank Milleresque, high-contrast portrait of Prime's face, although this would be largely covered by the intended insertion of an iPod.
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.
The most controversial line of this period was the Pretenders. Pretenders consisted of a Transformer contained inside an action figure shell who could "pretend" to be either a human or a monster. Complaints with this line were numerous, including the lack of articulation of the figures (the shells could only move their arms), the simple transformation of the robots within, and their increasing lack of resemblance to any sort of modern recognizable vehicle. Still, despite the complaints, the Pretender line continued through all but the final year of Generation One, with variations such as Beast Pretenders, Monster Pretenders, Classic Pretenders, Mega Pretenders and Ultra Pretenders, each with variations on the theme or increasing levels of complexity.
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.
The Japanese version of the toy, named "Optimus Prime Revenge Edition", was exclusively available at Tokyo Toy Show 2009, and later also from e-HOBBY. Despite being sold in Hasbro packaging like the mass retail Revenge toys in Japan (plus the addition of Japanese stickers marking it as a Japanese market release and containing Japanese safety warnings and manufacturer information), it slightly differed from the Hasbro version insofar as it lacked the tampographed kanji lettering.
Optimus Prime and his troops lay deactivated on the Fera Islands for three million years until G.I. Joe stumbled upon them one day in 1939. The Line The Autobots were reactivated by a repair drone and given new disguises, with Optimus Prime being reformatted into an unknown World War II-era human vehicle. He explained to Duke who they were, and learned that Megatron's Decepticons had been reactivated a year prior, and were currently wreaking havoc on Europe along with Cobra. While hesitant at first, Optimus Prime soon joined G.I. Joe in their mission to destroy Cobra and the Decepticons. Transformed After commanding the Aerialbots to get the Seekers out of the way, Prime advanced across the Fera Islands, but met resistance in the form of Rumble. Trial by Fire
After a thousand years of war on Cybertron, the planet was shaken from its orbit and risked being smashed to pieces by an asteroid field. Optimus decided to take a group of Autobots in the Ark and destroy the asteroids, but they were attacked by the Decepticons, and Optimus crashed the ship on Earth. Four million years later, the Ark repaired them, and they encountered Sparkplug and Spike Witwicky. Sparkplug suggested to Prime that the Autobots tap the volcano they'd crashed into for power. The two humans also warned the Autobots of an impending Decepticon attack, and Optimus laid a trap. Unfortunately the Decepticon forces attacked from all directions, and Starscream's null-ray put Optimus out of commission. Luckily Sparkplug easily fixed him, and his fast recovery inspired the Autobots to chase the Decepticons off. Optimus vowed to protect this new world. Battle for Cybertron
Another release of the Leader Class Optimus Prime figure, now redecoed from the original Revenge of the Fallen Leader Class mold, but with the gimmick-less arms from the Supreme Class retool, and a pair of articulated fingers which was not previously used for the original release. He also retains his pair of Energon Swords and Hooks, and his Knuckle piece. He also retains the fuel tanks that can combine to form his ion blaster. In terms of deco, he features a darker plastic color and paint (which resulted in a two-tone shades of silver & gunmetal), which is meant to go with this line's Jetfire.
In the two-part episode "Megatron Rising", Optimus loses his composure over the recent numerous Decepticon attacks coupled with the fact that Prowl had secretly placed the Dinobots on an island off the coast of Detroit instead of destroying them. He has Ratchet confiscate the Allspark key from Sari, which he loses when he is ambushed by Blitzwing. Optimus also fails to stop a newly resurrected Megatron from acquiring the Allspark. He defeats Megatron by overloading the Allspark in his chest with Sari's key. In the process, the Allspark shatters into countless pieces, scattering all across Detroit.
Released as part of the "W Convoy" campaign ("Double" Convoy, that is!) alongside a silver chrome version of Energon Rodimus, this gold chrome "Mēki" ("plating") version of the Deluxe size Optimus Prime toy was available only as a prize in a mail-in Robot Points contest. Initially limited to 20 units in the original draw, it appears that many more were made available through toy store drawings, given how many went on to appear on online auction sites through 2005 and 2006.
GT-R Prime was racing against GT-R Saber and GT-R Maximus when they were rudely interrupted by GT-R Megatron, a ruthless racer out to prove his worth by defeating all others. A fight broke out, but Prime interrupted it and convinced Megatron that they all shared the same need for speed, persuading him to settle things with a race instead. Transformers GT: Mission GT-R
This is not to suggest that specialized pieces are bad. Far from it. LEGO Indiana Jones would never feel real without Indy’s whip; LEGO Board Games would never spring to life without their unique dice. But there’s no denying that specialized pieces are costly to produce, and their proliferation was a prime reason why the LEGO Group’s profits plummeted through much of the 1990s, despite steady sales.
The cab transforms into the robot mode of Optimus Prime himself, with the addition of a pair of removable blue fists that plug into his headlights. The fists themselves do not store anywhere in vehicle mode, but can fit easily in Prime's opening chest compartment (originally designed to accommodate two Diaclone driver figures). Prime is armed with a black laser rifle that, due to design, he cannot hold straight.