The success of Beast Wars and the change in storyline resulted in its second phase: Beast Machines. Like Beast Wars, the name Transformers was used only as a secondary title. While still a success, the storyline and direction borne by Beast Machines was questioned and criticized by the most ardent fans who knew the previous history of the Transformers. Also, there was a clamor for a return to the original idea of the Transformers, that of their being protean robots with nearly humanlike artificial intelligences who transformed into vehicles or devices.
In the wake of this incident, the transformers managed to reclaim much of Cybertron. Mindful of the dangers of allowing humans like Cobra access Cybertronian technology, Prime sent Perceptor, Grimlock, Arcee, and Bumblebee on a mission to Earth. As it turned out, Prime's fears were well founded. The U.S. government had used parts from Megatron to create Serpent O.R., a cyborg designed to be a perfect weapon. A raid by Cobra allowed it to escape and gather an army of Decepticons on Cybertron, killing Bumblebee in the process. Despite the grief of losing Bumblebee, Prime continued on and rallied his comrades to do the same. Attacking the Autobot capital city, Serpentor's forces proved overwhelming, and Prime surrendered to ensure the Decepticons would cease fire and not kill another comrade. Realizing that Serpentor wanted the Autobot Matrix of Leadership, Prime broke free as Serpentor was distracted, but was unable to kill him. He was promptly attacked and nearly beaten to death by Razorclaw and Motormaster. He was subsequently forced to watch as Serpentor opened the Matrix. In doing so, Serpentor was not only reformatted into a transformer-like mechanoid, but was also shown the futility of the fighting by the Matrix. At this point, Cobra Commander was able to take control of Serpentor's body. In an attempt to stop him, Hawk opened the Matrix and was transformed into a great leader, rendering Cobra Commander comatose. As the Joes prepared to head home, Prime promised to record the Hawk-led humans' future.
Optimus has the ability to change any part of his robotic body into a tool or gadget. He has swing lines in his wrists. His wrists can also fire capture bolas. His arsenal includes a grappler, fire extinguisher and a negative friction spray. It is interesting that, unlike all the previous series, his face can almost always be seen, because his mouthplate is retractable like in the 2007 live action film.
Optimus Prime led a group of Autobots who left Cybertron aboard the Ark, which was shot down over Earth, sending them into stasis for four million years. Optimus was badly damaged in the crash, and the prognosis wasn't great, but he recovered in time to announce the Autobots had no choice but to involve the humans in their war. Following a battle at Dyson Dam, Prime persuaded Jetfire to join the Autobot team. When the Decepticons headed through the space bridge to Cybertron, Optimus followed, only for him and his team to be ambushed and imprisoned.
A redeco of Deluxe Earth Mode Optimus Prime with the jet pack attachments and a smaller version of Ultra Magnus' Mass Hammer, as seen in the "Endgame" series finale. The Wingblade attachments are also compatible with Voyager Optimus Prime. The figure never saw a release in the U.S. market due to Hasbro's decision to cancel the toy line, but a variation of it was made available in Japan.
Like several new-mold Revenge of the Fallen toys, Optimus Prime suffers from some cost-cutting measures that affected the final production version of the mold. According to Hasbro's stock photos/back-of-box photo of the hand-painted prototype, the toolboxes on the sides of his legs were designed to fold away further for a sleeker, cleaner look. Additionally, the rear tires would have been able to split in half, with the inner half of the tire going inside the outer half to recreate the thin tires seen on Prime's CG design. Some articulation was lost on the toy between Hasbro stock photography and the final release. His fingers are no longer articulated; instead, the entire hand is now one molded piece. Finally, the lower arms appear to have been originally designed so that his hands could slide in or out of them during transformation. Sadly, he also lacks rubber tires, which the original movie Prime did have. Meanwhile, the articulated fingers was later used for the Asia Premium Series & Movie The Best releases.
Optimus Prime was originally known as Orion Pax, a police captain from Rodion. An encounter with a pre-Decepticon Megatron would change the course of his life, teaching him that freedom was not just the right of all "civilised" beings, but of all sentient beings, and causing him to publicly reclaim the name "Autobot", previously used only at Cybertronians as a derogatory term, before the corrupt Senate.
When Highbrow was captured by the Decepticon leader Scorponok, Optimus Prime agreed to surrender himself to ensure his fellow Autobot's safety. Naturally, though, Prime did not expect Scorponok to hold up his end of the bargain, and he had Hosehead and Fizzle rescue Highbrow while he allowed himself to be imprisoned. Their mission successful, Hosehead and Fizzle then sprang Prime from his cell, and the team beat a hasty retreat. Autobot Hostage
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.
Revenge of the Fallen Legends class Optimus Prime is an all-new, much more accurate mold compared to the 2007 Legends class Prime, having a much greater accuracy in both robot and vehicle mode. In particular, his vehicle mode isn't inexplicably missing one smokestack like the 2007 toy. It should be noted that he was molded in only one paintable plastic color, with red and blue deco patterns decked on it. The top of the truck's bunk (ending up on his back in robot mode) has a slot to combine with Jetfire. For some reason, this isn't mentioned in the instructions, though they're hardly needed.
Alternity Convoy transforms into a 1:32 scale Nissan GT-R, featuring die-cast metal parts, an opening hood, trunk and doors, as well as an interior, complete with his feet and thighs being sculpted to form the back seats. This complex figure stands at 6.5" tall, and is armed with a pair of blasters on each arm. In the hyper-dimensional world of the oft-confusing Alternity fiction, this figure specifically represents the Optimus Prime of universal stream Primax 903.0 Beta.
A redeco (or should that be de-deco?) of the Grand Convoy Super Mode Pla-Kit, Grand Convoy Super Mode White Version was available exclusively on July 17th and 18th at the Japanese convention, Kodansha Super Chara Festival 2004 ("K-Fest"). It is a solid white version of the normal model kit, possessing all the features of the normal figure, which was intended to be used in a customization/painting contest held at the convention. It lacks the comic of the normal release.
When Sideswipe was accused and convicted of destroying the Nova Suspension Bridge, Optimus was infuriated that one of his own Autobots could commit such a heinous act. Optimus was tasked to hunt down and deactivate Sideswipe, though the task proved to be easy as Sideswipe did not run, hide or resist. After Optimus had deactivated Sideswipe, he was approached by Prowl, who pointed out that Sideswipe's actions made little sense, as he had committed the crime in broad daylight before many witnesses. Agreeing that the Decepticons might be behind the situation, Optimus allowed Prowl to take a team of Autobots to Carob Island to clear Sideswipe's name while Optimus and Jazz stayed behind to continue working on human/Autobot relations. Prowl returned with evidence that it was indeed a Decepticon-controlled clone of Sideswipe that had committed the crime. Optimus then presumably reactivated Sideswipe when his name was cleared. Deadly Paradise