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Transformers Toy Review Archive (older series, 1984 to date)
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Numbat's review of: LOC Optimus Prime (repaint)

Name: Optimus Prime 2 (Series 4)
Allegiance: Autobot
Function: Galactic Leader
Sub-Group: Legends of Cybertron

With the rediscovery of the lost colony worlds and the reunification of the Transformers race after millions of years, Optimus Prime has become the leader of far more people than he ever could have imagined. Cybertron Primus has been reactivated, the Planet Keys returned to their rightful place on Cybertron, and Galvatron and his Decepticons all but defeated. It is time, he thinks, for a new golden era of peace in the galaxy, and he has ordered the construction of a fleet of starships so that the Autobots might explore the galaxy around them, bringing peace and justice wherever they go.

While many of the Autobot soldiers who fought with him are choosing to remove their weapons systems now that the war is over, Optimus Prime has decided to keep his, not because he hopes war will once again come, but as a reminder of what once was. He hopes to serve as a reminder to all those who would bring violence and tyranny to the universe that there are mighty warriors who will stand against them always.

[Bio taken from Leader Class version.]

'Repaint' is becoming the word of the day in Transformers figure lines, and Cybertron is by no means any exception! Optimus sees himself repainted in the Leader Class range, representing the Autobot leader once peace has been restored to the galaxy. Prime now finds himself leading a diversity of cultures no longer is he simply the 'Autobot Leader'. Given that Hasbro felt they could cash in on another release of the Leader Class figure, it really came as no surprise when a repainted version of the Legends of Cybertron (LOC) figure appeared in the 4th series.

Justin has already given a comprehensive review of the first LOC release of Optimus Prime. This review aims to highlight the (minor) differences with this second release of the mold.

(Don't worry if two versions isn't enough for your collection, the Classics line is to see a 'Menasor' (meaning, colour wise, Motormaster) repaint of the LOC Prime mold!)

Alternate Mode:

Prime's alternate mode in the Cybertron series is some sort of anti-firetruck. By 'anti', I mean I see it as far more likely this guy will be starting fires, as opposed to putting them out! (The guns are the giveaway.) Alas, the LOC release does not come with tiny versions of the Leader Class accessories. Because of this, Prime looks like some sort of weird flatbed (as he is apt to in the Leader Class release when the core of the robot is used alone). This is one of the great drawbacks of Cybertron Prime in general, as he is not a cab when his accessories are not attached he's just incomplete. A release like this without the accessories in any form, therefore, just falls short.

This aside, the 'flatbed' measures 4 1/2 (11.5cm) long which is fairly extended for a LOC figure, and he does look pretty ridiculous in this mode.

What about the repaint? Well, he is far darker than his original incarnation. Silver is still important for small sections, such as the front side grills (a welcome application) and part of the bed, while red is blazing out for all to see. Black has replaced the blue for both truck body and windows. Metallic blue has replaced the yellow on the bed. White still adds detail to the front, and the radiator.

The mold has the same defects, however including the lack of side windows on the cab, and the blatant robot chest at the rear not to mention the protruding head!

Still, the new colour scheme does improve the appearance in this mode. The two molded wheels look far more realistic on a background of black, while the lack of clashing colours (e.g. - yellow!) is a relief.

There are absolutely no Autobot symbols to be seen after all, Optimus is no longer the leader of a single race. Instead, there are delicately applied silver decals two on either side of the cab. The right has miniature Earth and Giant Planet symbols, while the left displays the Jungle and Speed Planet icons. I think that's pretty cool, and is the main reason I caved in a bought the figure.

Robot Mode:

The transformation is as simple as the Leader Class figure, although lacks the side windows becoming the chest. You just have that whole thing ready assembled.

The result stands 3 1/4 (8.5cm) tall, and is a great miniaturised version of the Leader Class figure. Packaged in this mode, it's easy to be persuaded to buy him.

The new colours really come into their own in this mode. The thankful absence of yellow brings the chap up, while the silver and black are a far superior alternative on the waist piece. The white under the chest covers the traditional grill, which works better than the red in the original release, but the lack of molded detail here is still disappointing.

Overall, the black darkens Prime a lot. That's an interesting look to go for, given he is now ruling in peacetime.

The head sculpt is still the best piece of molded detailing on the figure which is a pity, as there's ample opportunity to show off on this release, as with many of the other LOC figures.

The planet symbols look great on his shoulders, though and it really is something of a new look on Prime, despite the very subtle colour changes.

Of course, he still falls far short in the articulation stakes. Ball joints at the hips do the legs, while hinges at the elbows service the arms. Poor show really knees were definitely easily possible, while shoulder joints were not out of the question. It is such a simple mold, articulation really did not need to be sacrificed to allow for a realistic translation of the larger figure to this scale.

Obviously, THS-01 Galaxy Convoy is by far the best version of this Prime (and perhaps any to date - if you like wee guys!), but you can't expect anything approaching that quality from a budget figure. Given the price, this toy delivers well, and he looks great on display in either mode (particularly robot), even if poseability is restricted.

Marks out of ten for the following:

Transformation: 3 Very simple especially for the LOC line. I really see little reason to lack the chest transformation.
Durability: 9 He seems pretty solid I only have slight worries about the arm transformation. It just feels a little weak.
Fun: 6 He's not really all that fun, but does look cool and is a definite improvement on the original release. The planet symbols are a really nice touch.
Price: 10 You can pick him up for 2.97 ($5.50) at Tesco with your weekly shop, and he goes for even less in the US. You can't really say fairer than that.
Overall: 7 I think the idea of a peacetime Prime is pretty cool especially as he is now the leader of a multicultural nation, rather than the Autobots only. I wouldn't spend 40 on a Leader Class version, so the LOC figure is a great alternative. Still, there are better LOC figures available, and you've hoped a Prime / Convoy figure would have been given a better treatment in this line.

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