Posts tagged with "optimus prime" - 1
Posted March 14, 2020 at 9:49 pm

If I recall, I bemoaned Stege Optimus Prime for being a uncanny valley Earth Truck, so very close that it looked like an Earth truck wearing some extra parts stapled on it.  Well, here's the truck underneath those parts!  It's what you wanted really all along, after we sold you the other one that tried to be this but not really!  Stege was ""not"" Earth truck, and EarthRise Optimus Prime is just Earth truck.

I mean, it's an Optimus Prime, whaddya want.  A trailer?  It's here!  It even splits open and there's Command Deck inside.  Roller?  It's... not here.  Well, there's plenty of other Rollers.  But this is your Trying To Be The Cartoon G1 Optimus Prime With An Actual Trailer, At Retail.  

And to be honest...?  Heck, I think I preferred the Cybertronian-style one.  I miss the way the front wheels folded up into the ribcage.  I miss it having... I dunno, what small amount of stylization it had.  Yeah, it was an Earth truck wearing goggles, but turns out the goggles were the interesting part.  

I mean, this isn't a bad toy.  It's actually quite good!  It has some new ways to get Cartoon Optimus out of a box.  I like how it wads its truck stuff up inside its shirt.  I do actually like the trailer -- it's largely why I bothered with it.  My kids are... VERY into trucks with trailers and also connecting all my Transformer base stuff together.  The middle section of the trailer door slides out and becomes a shield, AND it has hinged edges that connects to all the road pieces from the rest of the line (plus Stege's Omega Supreme).  If I skipped this Optimus Prime toy that has a trailer with base-connecting capability, I'd be a monster.  

I did have to fix his eyes, though.  They were blue, which... well, his face is also blue, so they kind of disappear.  I opened up his noggin and painted his eyes gold.  That's one major thing I like about current Transformers toys, the part where the eyes are sculpted into the back of the head but poke out through the front, likely to make painting them easier for the factories.  Well, it makes it easier for me, too!  Huzzah.  Those gold eyes pop, now.  

EarthRise Optimus Prime also comes with an ion cannon (his rifle) that folds in half and can store anywhere there's a 5mm peghole.  (There are lots.)  And there's a Matrix of Leadership inside his chest which can be removed.  Technically this is why his hands are sculpted to open, but he's not great at holding it.  Kind of have to wedge either end around his thumbs and pray.  But!  If you flip around the Matrix, there's a 5mm port there, which means you can shove effects parts into there if you want to have him do Matrix Blasts or whatever Optimus Prime is up to these days.  Or just have the Matrix zoom through the sky like Nyan Cat.  

One of my favorite oddities with EarthRise Optimus Prime is that he's partially made from actual Stege Optimus Prime parts, especially his legs.  But they gutted his legs, put some new stuff in there, and they don't flip around to transform anymore, and so you have this extra, vestigial 5mm trailer hitch peghole split across the outsides of his shins, with a new 5mm peg added to the insides of his new legs.  It's wild.

I'm not sure any of you followed that.  I barely understood myself reading it.

Oh well.

It's Optimus Prime, folks.  

Posted September 23, 2019 at 12:06 am

I think I described Masterpiece-36 Megatron as a toy you don't transform so much as you sculpt.  You kind of massage one form into the other at a much more granular scale than is typical.  The forearm's the wrong shape coming out of the vehicle mode?  Moosh it.  Moosh it into its proper form.  

MP-44 Optimus Prime (version 3) is just like that.  You moosh him.

A truck cab has too much mass up in front and not enough out back for it to translate into the proper shape for robot mode?  Just grab some front mass and move it to the back.  Move it and moosh it.  Like modeling clay.  It's similar to a live-action movie transformation, but just, y'know, resulting in a clean, cartoonish robot.  

And it takes a bit.  I wouldn't categorize the process under "fun," particularly, but there was nothing about it I hated.  It's just kind of low-key tedium.  But it's hard to argue with the results.  The cab looks like the cartoon's cab, lack of silver stripe and all, and the robot mode looks like the cartoon's robot.  Like, literally like it.  And not in a sterile way, like the starkly boxy $5 nontransformable G1 Optimus Prime figures you can find at Walmart.  He looks as alive as a representation of That Particular Character Model can be.  Which is surprisingly a lot.  This toy pokes at your lizard brain.

MP-44 Optimus Prime comes with a lot of stuff, all of it from specific cartoon episodes that I don't particularly care for.  Sure, there's the hand-axe (which was also in the Marvel UK comic), but there's Sideswipe's jetpack he can wear, there's Starscream's head and shoulder kibble you can add so you can pretend this was Starscream dressing up like Optimus Prime to fool humanity in... I want to say "Megatron's Master Plan"?  There's a beat up head and a busted ab slice you can swap in if you want to approximate Optimus Prime's broken form from The Transformers: The Movie.  You can transform and remove the Combat Deck stuff inside the trailer to reenact an animation error where Combat Deck popped out of himself as a mini version of himself on wheels.  There's tiny articulated figures of Spike, Sparkplug, and Carly.  

And important to me, MP-44 Optimus Prime has an option to switch between the first season head and the second season (and movie) head.  The first season head is what the Marvel Comics used for its run.  Second season head always reads as "the cartoon" to me.  And so I like the first season head.  That's my nostalgia button.

A few people's MP-44 knees broke.  Mine seem to be fine.  

MP-10, the previous Optimus Prime Masterpiece, didn't look like it really belonged with the other guys I'd amassed to stand next to him.  Prowl, Ratchet, Ultra Magnus, Wheeljack... They were all very cartoony.  MP-10 kinda stood out a bit, more and more.  Especially versus the new Megatron.  MP-44 is a re-alignment.  It settles better in the groove that Masterpiece decided it was gonna inhabit, for better or worse.  


Posted March 22, 2019 at 10:21 pm

When I was a much younger lad, in those golden years before even the term "Autobot" had made a resurgence within Transformers stuffs after a long nap, when buying a new Optimus Prime (not Primal) toy seemed like a crazy pipe dream, I had lots of ideas about What Optimus Prime Should Look Like In Real Life.  It was largely based on the aesthetics of the original 1984 toy, with its giant box for a torso atop a pair of comparatively skinny legs.  It was very "this thing is a truck first and a robot second," with this shell of a Freightliner housing this skeleton of pistons and gears.  This foggy concept floating in my brain was my Idealized Prime.  And you could nourish that sort of thing for forever as it grew and grew, because in that desert bare of any possibility of a Transformers revival, that was all you figured you'd ever have.  

And then, you know, suddenly came the parade of reimagined Optimus Primes across countless aesthetics, culminating in a recent snap-back to the source material (by which we mean the cartoon).  

But Bumblebee Movie's Optimus Prime is so very close to what was in my brain all those decades ago.  Mind, I'm talking more about the action figure itself.  What we see on screen has less of what I want.  The CGI model is, you know, just An Optimus Prime.  The toy, though, has to become a truck.  And so that toy IS truck.  The robot IS truck.  

And what a friggin' great truck it is.  Unlike usual, this Voyager Class Optimus Prime toy feels like it's prioritizing the truck and then making a robot out of that truck.  It's not just an Optimus Prime chest with robot legs poking out the back.  It's an actual truck.  The back of it doesn't look like legs.  Instead, about half of the legs folds up into the back-end of the cab.  This leaves a more realistic-looking hitch section behind, which should really be just some railing for wheels to attach to.  

The rest explodes and then recompacts into a solid robot form.  Most of the bottom front of the truck, including the bumper, flips and turns around to become Optimus Prime's back.  His arms hide inside the cab in the usual L formation, but some panels cover them from view.  Some parts might pop out of their hinges in the process if you're not gentle, but they snap back on.  This is the toy's only frustration.  

The result is a robot that looks like it's made of truck.  An Optimus Prime made out of truck parts, rather than a truck made out of Optimus Prime.  I prefer to keep the silver stripe ab pieces folded down.  This is not accurate to the CGI model, but it's accurate to how I view the shape of Optimus Prime's chest.  It's a giant box.  Flipping the stripe-abs down approximates this.  

Plus if you got a hankering to go watch this design in motion, you'll see an Optimus Prime who shoots to disable, not shoots to graphically disembowel.  That's an extra bonus.

Posted November 16, 2018 at 11:00 pm

Here's a toy which I own because TFSource wasn't selling Stege Megatron separately and reviews on his casemate Optimus Prime were pretty strong.  I'd been pretty underwhelmed with Stege Optimus just from promotional materials, partly because, well, it's Optimus Prime.  We get a lot of those!  And the only new thing he brings to the table is his half-assed Cybertronian altmode.

Yeah, it's very partially assed.  It literally looks like a licensed Freightliner cab but with some boxes tacked on last-minute, like the Earth truck underneath was a stash of weed you needed to disguise from your parents who barged in unexpectedly.  This vehicle mode is the Standing Up Against A Billboard Pretending To Be A Part Of It of preEarth forms.  

Having the toy in-person doesn't change that a whole lot.  What does help partially is that you can rotate the wheels facing down as if they were, like, hoverpods or something.  Then, suspended by a display stand (sold separately), Prime looks more like a floating Tetris piece than a badly-disguised Earth truck at first glance.  Second-through-eleventy glances he looks like a badly-disguised Earth truck again, though.

But I can see why he's been getting positive reviews.  Though his robot mode is Just Optimus Prime again, it's a great robot mode to fiddle with.  It's well-proportioned and has all that Stege-level articulation you expect (ankle tilts!).  His head has a greater range of motion than Megatron, though, plus his elbows are able to bend at a little more than 90 degrees, which gives him a more natural "holding gun up" stance.  

What really strikes me about him (and Megatron and to a lesser extent Sideswipe) is the little things they can do with his transformation now that they're not allocating budget and parts to making him a combiner torso or a little guy which turns into his head.  Stege Optimus has so many little panels here and there that "complete" his transformation and make the robot mode feel more "finished" than there would be otherwise.  Hell, there's tiny little flaps on his knees that fold out in truck mode just to cover up his thighs more.  There's no real super need to do this, but it's nice that the toy has the bandwidth to spend on this kind of small stuff.  

Optimus comes with an axe that folds up into... into something that plugs onto the back of his truck mode, and he comes with his signature ion cannon.  

It's the first Classics-style Optimus that Just Transforms since... well, Classics Optimus in 2006.  So if you weren't around then, or if you feel like 12 years is plenty time to justify an upgrade, then this toy's your dude.  This toy's like that one in a few ways but easily better, though its altmode may make you roll your eyes.  

Posted August 22, 2017 at 2:25 am

So, like, live-action movie Optimus Prime is now this deranged, pissy murder machine, but there was, like, a movie and a half where he was pretty okay!  There originally was some kind of majesty to him, honestly.  I don't think I'm ever going to cotton to the new kibble-less design for Movie Prime that's been in the past two movies partly because I associate that body with the murdery end of the characterization spectrum, but there remain some legitimately good feelings with the first look.

AAAAAND so I got myself a Masterpiece Movie Optimus Prime.  Just keep repeating to yourself that this is "Fate rarely calls us at a moment of our choosing" Prime and not "I'LL KILL YOU!!!!" Prime.  This is Movie Prime before he turned to cocaine to cope with his moviestardom.  

At first glance, you might wonder, okay, like, is this just a redeco of Revenge of the Fallen Leader Class Optimus Prime?  It's true, they're a little similar.  They're essentially the same size, and they transform very similarly.  Masterpiece Movie Prime is a completely new toy, though, and everything different about him is better.

If you've owned or handled an ROTF Leader Prime, you might recall that the transformation was incredibly involved, a little frustrating at points, but nevertheless somehow resulted in a surprisingly accurate action figure in both modes.  Masterpiece Movie Prime still has an incredibly involved (and, as noted above, very similar) transformation.  It's actually probably a little bit more involved!  The good news is, nothing frustrated me.  The transformation is more complex, but no parts get in the way of other parts, and I never wanted to throw it against the wall or give up in frustration.  So that's enjoyable!  

The toy is also more accurate in both modes.  The forearms are less-obviously hood chunks, everything's sculpted a little closer to on-model, and the kibble on the back tidies up much better and takes up a smaller volume.

There's also a buttload more paint.  (Takara's released a few ROTF Leader Primes with an obsessively-accurate paintjob, but this is the first for Hasbro, I believe.)  The flames are properly outlined in silver.  The insides of the legs are painted properly.  The biceps are wrapped in color instead of being left bare.  Silver areas are painted silver where it can be, rather than being left in silver plastic.

The headlights are translucent plastic, rather than being painted on.  Parts of the toy are in die-cast metal, which not only helps him easily stand (the feet are largely metal), but since the die-cast is left unpainted, it gives his metal parts an appealing, weary texture.

You can swap the faces on his head from mouthplated to bare mouthed.  There's a small Matrix inside his stomach.  He comes with two swords and his gun, which you can either give him to wield or combine and store on his back in either mode.  He has some finger articulation, and everything satisfyingly ratchets when you move him around.  

Also, there's an MP Movie Bumblebee, and the two seem to be in scale with each other.  That's allegedly the Masterpiece line's thing, robot mode scale, and that's an appealing draw to me.  I'm on board for accurate scale alone, pretty much.

He's pretty great.  I mean, he may eventually some day take your face, but the face-ripping hooks aren't included, soooooo.  

Posted April 4, 2017 at 5:01 am

Nautica came with some other toys in her box set!  They're all right.  I'll talk next about Laser Prime, who's one of two toys in the set that's a mold I haven't owned before.  There's a version of Laser Prime at retail, in normal Optimus Prime colors, and I yawned so hard I actually didn't buy a Transformer for once.  

You see, like, okay... back in the Nineties, Laser Optimus Prime was a thing.  It was one of the first truly articulated Transformers toys, and so it was Everybody's Favorite Transformer for about a decade.  It was an Optimus with a glow-up sword who had a trailer that turned into a base that fired disks and missiles.  It was also decoed "wrong."  It had a gray chest with red windows and a yellow grill, and the legs were black.  And for that entire decade of "Laser Prime is the goddamned best toy ever," there were counterpart rumblings of "OKAY BUT MAKE IT IN REAL OPTIMUS PRIME COLORS."

But here's the thing.  It is 2017, and we get a new poseable G1 Optimus Prime toy every few months.  You could fill shelves and shelves with all the poseable G1 Optimus Prime toys we've gotten since 2004.  And so at this point?  Laser Prime's eccentric color scheme is one of the few remaining unique things about him.  We've got articulation and trailer bases and electronics and swords in so many other Optimus Primes.  So when you do a new toy that's specifically a homage to Laser Prime, why the heck should I care at this point if he's got his "proper" red chest and silver grill and blue legs?

Also the new toy didn't look that great, either, which was another reason to skip it.  But if I'm gonna own this mold as Optimus Prime, I'm glad the version Nautica's box set pushed on me was the version that's decoed like Actual Laser Optimus Prime.

Like the other Voyager Class-scale toys in the Titans Return toyline, this Optimus Prime is a Triple Changer.  He's not-so-unobviously an Octane pretool, as he goes from robot to tanker truck to jet.  (We've seen the upcoming Octane from this mold, and it has a new head and chest, IIRC.)  The robot's okay, the tanker truck mode is better, and the jet mode is hot garbage. 

But let's talk about the robot mode.  Unlike the original Laser Prime, Titans Return Laser Prime's robot transforms into the entire truck, trailer and all.  The original's robot was just the cab, which hauled around a trailer accessory.  But TR Laser Prime contains multitudes.  As such, he doesn't, y'know, transform the same way.  The robot mode essentially looks the same, but different parts become different other parts in service of this desired end.  There's a pair of helmet antenna built into the collarbone of the robot mode, so that when you plug in the Head Robot Guy, there's some added bulk.  But this don't look right, and in fact it looks kinda goofy.  Oh well.  The robot has both a sword and a hand-held cannon, just like the original, but they don't light up with electronics.  

Tanker truck mode is my favorite, and it's easy to explain why.  The original Laser Prime's trailer had giant stickers covering most of the trailer, and what these stickers portrayed was a mural of Laser Prime's robot burning down a forest, followed by his name in capital letters with a cursive-y splash of "OCTANE" on top of that.  Short the "OCTANE," TR Laser Prime replicates this trailer mural perfectly.  So perfectly it appears to be just the same art, with a depiction of the original toy and everything.  Why is Optimus Prime burning down a forest?  I dunno.  But if I ever get a tattoo, I want it to be of myself burning down a forest followed by my own name in all caps.  I'd have this running down both of my arms.  Anyway, this is super awesome.  Not SO awesome that these stickers aren't a tiny tiny tiny bit oversized and so they kind of want to peel off a little at the edges whenever you so much as look at the toy sideways, but still super awesome.  It absolutely makes the truck mode, which is otherwise not terrible to begin with.

The jet mode turns the truck backwards, shoves a nose and cockpit awkwardly on the ass-end of the trailer, and barely puts tiny wings and tailfins on there.  It's awful, and I don't recommend acknowledging this mode further.

Anyway, Laser Prime definitely only has two modes, and they're both okay to great, while the stickers are a constant annoyance.  The original Laser Prime does all this stuff better, though.

Posted July 2, 2016 at 3:01 am

Look, I'll tell you right up front, I'm not going to be objective here.  Powermaster Optimus Prime was my first Optimus Prime toy, which I received only after four solid childhood years of pining for any Optimus Prime toy at all.  I had an Ultra Magnus, and I immediately tried to color his white cab robot with red and blue markers.  (he turned out kinda pink and baby blue, because washable markers).  Whenever I had the chance to pick up a ne Transformer from the store, I would choose whatever red and blue one was immediately available as some sort of surrogate Optimus.  That's how I ended up with Crosshairs and Cloudburst.  My desire was strong.  And so when I tell you that my first Optimus Prime toy, the 1988 Powermaster version, was the greatest toy of all time, maybe take some of my mania and nigh-tangible desperation into consideration.

SO YEAH I'M PRETTY PUMPED ABOUT THIS NEW TITANS RETURN POWERMASTER OPTIMUS PRIME!

Sure, he's not an entirely new toy -- he's a heavy retool of last year's Combiner Wars Ultra Magnus, but hey guess what, I loved Combiner Wars Ultra Magnus, so at least I knew this toy was going to be at least that good going in.  Titans Return Powermaster Optimus Prime takes that Ultra Magnus toy and gives him a new semi cab, new arms, new shins, a new chestpiece, new shoulder cannons, and a new head.  Some of it functions/transforms the same, some of it doesn't.  For example, Ultra Magnus was a car carrier, so his trailer had a lot of open air spots so you could see the smaller cars you loaded on him.  Powermaster Optimus Prime has a box trailer, and so a lot of this toy's new tooling goes to creating the walls for the box that is his new trailer.  Ultra Magnus had extendo-arms, Powermaster Optimus Prime has fold-out panels under his new arms that form the roof of the trailer.  Instead of open air, there is now a series of trailer wall chunks that wrap around Optimus Prime's legs in robot mode.  And so on.

Unlike the original Powermaster Optimus Prime, the Titans Return version's cab doesn't transform into a smaller robot.  (Ultra Magnus's update didn't have that either, so no huge surprise.)  But, like the original, the new Powermaster Optimus Prime does have a third... base mode.  A third mode that is a base.  He's a triple changer and one of his transformation modes is a battlestation.  I'm trying to find a way to phrase this which doesn't imply he gets to touch your bathing suit area.  Let's start a new paragraph.

Powermaster Optimus Prime has a third base mode (DAMMIT) because Titans Return's deal is that everyone has a little head that can pop off and become a guy and live in the base modes of the Leader Class guys (like Optimus) or become the drivers of the Deluxe/Voyager Class guys and the much smaller Titan Master vehicles.  SPOILERS: Ultra Magnus didn't have a base mode, and so when they retoold Magnus into Optimus, the result is that Optimus Prime's base mode isn't terribly great!  He unfolds a little, pops a squat, and then the ramps you create out of his legs run right into his arms.  At least when transformed properly.  If you splay him out more, you can make those ramps run down onto whatever surface he's sitting on.  Eventually, if you have other Titans Return base mode guys (like Blaster and Soundwave and FORTRESS FRIGGIN' MAXIMUS) the ends of the ramps all connect and create a larger base.  

Likewise, Optimus Prime is covered with wee tiny bitty pegs that you can attach the little Titan Master head dudes to when they're dudes and not heads.  There's also seats and stuff, like inside Optimus Prime's new shoulder cannons.  (Optimus keeps the handheld rifles that Magnus had, the ones that combined into the staff of Magnus's hammer, but the parts that form the head of the hammer have been replaced by the new shoulder cannons.)  

Since Optimus Prime is one of the bigger Titans Return figures, he doesn't have just the normal Little Head Guy interaction as the smaller guys.  To make his combination more proportional, there's this whole helmet contraption that fits over the entire little head to make his head bigger.  If you flip up the helmet, he's got a tiny Optimus-like head with a mouth.  The helmet of this tiny head is designed after the original Powermaster Optimus Prime cab robot's head, which is a nice callback.  The tiny head transforms into the robot mode design of the original Powermaster little engine partner guy, Hi-Q, but he's called "Apex" now and his colors are kinda off.   During transformation to vehicle mode, the helmet flips down into the semi truck cab and becomes a seat which the tiny head Titan Master robot can sit in.

Anyway, I love this guy.  He's a great robot, a pretty good truck, a transformation I already really liked with some more complexity added, but with an admittedly terrible base mode.  Seriously, the ramps he has run right back into his own walls.  But, eh, let's face it, he's spending most of his time in robot mode anyway.  

Oh, and Japan is gonna heavily retool this guy AGAIN to make him look even more G1y, and I'm gonna buy the hell out of that one, too.  Just so you know.

I have a sickness.

Posted August 25, 2015 at 7:00 pm

I've probably mentioned it in this blog before, but when I was a kid, I designed a Transformers combiner.  Powermaster Optimus Prime and Pretender Classics had just happened, and I noticed that we were starting to get old guys (Bumblebee, Jazz, Grimlock, Starscream) redone as new toys with current gimmicks, and I hatched a plan to get me other new toys of guys I wanted years earlier but never got toys of.  And so, using allll the creativity that a ten-year-old can muster, I designed a Transformers gestalt guy made of Ratchet, Ironhide, Prowl, and Wheejack with Optimus Prime as a torso.  It was very creative.  So wow.

Anyway, twenty-five years later, the dream is nearly being realized.  I've got my Ironhide and Prowl, Wheeljack's coming, and there's some art of a possible Ratchet that leaked, and of course there's Optimus Prime.  I am so into this.  I want everyone to be a combiner.  I want to rebuy my entire Transformers collection as combiner limbs and torsos.  Combiner Wars is the shit.

Anyway, all these new limbs here (Ironhide, Sunstreaker, Prowl, and Mirage) are retools of the Stunticons.  Ironhide was Offroad, Sunstreaker was Breakdown, Prowl was Dead End (well, okay, he's a retool of Streetwise who's a retool of Dead End), and Mirage was Drag Strip.  They all get new heads.  They're officially supposed to combine with "Battle Core Optimus," a white redeco of the first wave Optimus Prime torso with a new also-Optimus-Prime head retool, but I'm cool with the first wave Optimus Prime I already have.  My childhood combiner guy didn't have a white redeco of Prime in it.  Also Legends Class Rodimus forms the chest armor.  Sort of.  He likes to not stay on so well.

My favorite of the four is Sunstreaker, since his toy incorporates the big fist/foot/cannon accessory into the robot mode itself.  Plus Sunstreaker's yellow, and you know me and my yellow.  

One thing I don't like is how the fist/foot/cannon accessory on each of these guys is split up between silver-painted plastic and silver plastic.  Some of the plastic in these toys are nylon for structural integrity reasons, and nylon won't take factory paint, but it still makes the weapon modes of each toy look even less cohesive than before, like a piece of gun with some fingers in it.  It's just more conspicuous.  Which, again, is why I'm happiest with Sunstreaker, who can peg his fist/foot/cannon accessory onto his back.  

I've seem some folks complain that we're getting new toys of these four guys when we already have toys of them.  Well, maybe you do!  Those toys came out in 2008!  That was a while ago!  And, like my childhood self, sometimes you don't get to get everything you want during the first pass, so second chances are nice.  And it's even better if these second chances combine into a larger robot.  

Now where's my Wheeljack and my Ratchet?

Posted February 17, 2015 at 8:01 pm

look i only said the comics were stopping

When this new Voyager Class Optimus Prime was first introduced to us, we didn't know he was going to be a super robot's torso in some new subline imprint called Combiner Wars.  And so we were all sort of staring at him, scratching our heads, wondering what was up.  New Optimus was lookin' kinda weird.  Photography of him cleverly obscured the combined-robot crotch hanging off his back, and his limb connection points and super robot head were likewise obscured.  Knowing that certain elements were being compromised to incorporate a torso mode, not to mention existing mostly to be the eingineering groundwork for another toy, made everything fall into place.  

Combiner Wars Motormaster is a pretty damn extensive retool of Combiner Wars Optimus Prime.  They look like they share a bunch of parts, but it's always fewer parts than you think.  Yeah, from the thighs down, they're the same toy, but nearly everything from there up is new.  I'm talking like nothing but the fists, the backs of the biceps, and some structural parts of the torso.  The entire front of the cab on either is different, as are the arms and chest and heads.  Functionally, they are the same toy, but their sculpt differs. 

CW Prime is a beefy friggin' Optimus Prime.  He's a little pinheaded, but that's partly due to his transformation -- his neck sits on a rotating panel that obscures his head in truck or torso mode, and there's not a lot of clearance for it otherwise.  The super robot head hides inside his giant backpack.  His chest windows are fake kibble, with the real truck windows placed on the backs of his arms.  His legs transform like basically any Optimus Prime ever.  Motormaster is the same except he gets different sculpted details other than fake chest windows.

Both these guys are meant to be the torso of a combined super robot, so some key joints ratchet very toughly.  The hips in particular are very solid, and their ratcheting resting points are pretty far from each other, which makes the sculpted slant at the bottom of the toes feel silly.  There's no ratcheting point that lines up with how his toes are sculpted against the ground.  

Optimus gets two guns that combine into a larger gun and Motormaster gets a gun and a sword that combine into a larger sword.  The combined weapons are intended for their combiner robot forms.  In torso mode, you can keep their chest clamshell closed, or open it up to place Legends Class Blackjack (or his future retool, Rodimus) inside as armor.  

Optimus Prime's a beefy Prime, very wide and boxy, which are traits we don't get in an Optimus Prime toy much anymore, so I like him for that.  Most, if given a choice between the two, would choose Motormaster.  Motormaster gets far, far fewer toys, and other than the obvious Optimus legs the base toy seems geared more towards Motormaster than Optimus.  

Posted July 1, 2014 at 1:30 am

This BotCon's set had a few things I wouldn't have thought I wanted but once presented with them I was all OH YEAH.  Like, say, "Hey, do you want another Classics Optimus Prime redeco?"  If that was said to me?  Naw.  No thanks.  I've got like four versions of that guy already, and one of them from BotCon.  But no no no let them clarify:  "Hey, do you want Classics Optimus Prime in FRIGGIN' SUNSTORM ORANGE as FIRE GUTS GINRAI?"

Oh, yes.  Yes, I do.

I've said before that Powermaster Optimus Prime is still probably up there at the top of my list of favorite Optimus Prime toys.  Yeah, it's a placement fueled in nonnegligible amounts of nostalgia.  It was my first Optimus Prime toy as a kid.  It combines with its trailer to make a bigger robot.  It's a cool toy.  Well, once Japan did that sucker up in friggin' orange (and red) and that was their Fire Guts God Ginrai toy.  (Powermaster Prime was a human trucker named Ginrai in a mech suit in Japan, not Optimus Prime.)  I own this, because it's friggin' Powermaster Prime in orange.  It's beautiful.

Well, BotCon apparently decided to homage that version of that guy as a redeco of Classics Optimus Prime, for reasons I can't imagine other than to please specifically me.  Let me tell you about this guy.  The photography is worthless.  Whatever color orange he is (same goes with the original), it doesn't photograph.  It's close to that creamsicle Sunstorm orange I love the best, but I can't get Photoshop to make my photos approximate it.  Regardless, it's astoundingly pretty.  There's some chrome involved too, on the truck grill.  It's a fantastic-looking thing.

Ginrai is supposed to be a Knight Commander.  He comes with two guns!  So apparently BotCon wants you to use one of his guns, untransformed, as a shield.  You half-transform his arm so it can peg into the handhole, and then the "shield" points forward from his wrist.  It's clever, and makes him feel a little more Knightish.  Albeit, y'know, a knight with a giant rifle.  

I just want it to be on the record: BotCon, you can redeco anything in these colors and I will buy it.

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