Select your language

Series: Animated
Allegiance: Autobot
Category: Activator
Year: 2008


Prelude: In the good old days, before Hasbro decided that collectors and kids could not possibly like the same Transformers figures, Transformers Animated was a series for adults and kids to enjoy. Enter the Activators, figures with spring-powered transformations that depicted the main characters of the cartoon series. And naturally Optimus Prime got the Activator treatment as well. So, push the transformation lever, grab your Allspark fragments, and let’s say go!

Robot Mode: Animated had a very unique design aesthetic that makes it stand out from pretty much every other Transformers line and this figure here clearly belongs. It’s also quite clearly Optimus Prime, whose basic design transcends the various TF continuities. So character recognition is definitely not a problem. Here we have Animated Optimus Prime. And to get my one big beef with this figure out of the way right at the start: he really should have an axe. Yes, I know that (almost) none of the Activators carried weapons, but still: it’s not quite Animated Optimus Prime without the axe.

Apart from being axe-less, though, this is one impressive figure. The look is great and the articulation is fabulous for such a relatively small figure. Activator Prime can turn his head, is ball-jointed throughout, and can easily pull off a kicking and running pose. So no complaints on this front at all. When standing up straight, he kind of has to keep his feet apart a bit, otherwise they will tab into each other. Otherwise, though? All good.

So bottom line for the robot mode: small, but very nicely detailed and articulated for such a small guy. Also, if you want to recreate the scale of the cartoon somewhat, this guy works well with the Universe Legends Prowl and Bumblebee, as well as Voyager Lugnut.

Alternate Mode: Unsurprisingly Activator Prime transformers into a semitruck. The basic shape is more or less the same as with every other Animated Optimus (except for the Cybertron Mode Prime, of course). At least as long as you are looking at him from the front. The back of the driver’s cabine, however, displays the entire spring-powered assembly for the auto-transformation, which doesn’t really look like it belongs on a truck. So overall it’s far from the greatest truck mode ever, but it’s still recognizable as what it is.

Speaking of the auto-transformation, the Activators could automatically transform from vehicle into robot mode… mostly. Pulling the little lever on top of the driver’s cabin transforms Optimus roughly 80 percent into robot mode. You still need to straighten his feet and fold down the wheels on his legs. Also, the auto-transformation only works in one direction. Transforming him back into truck mode is entirely manual.

Bottom line for the truck mode: you can see it’s supposed to be a truck and the auto-transformation is fun. At this price class, that’s really all you need.

Remarks: In the Animated series, Optimus Prime was not the experienced, all-wise leader of the Autobots, but rather just a captain of a small-time repair crew. Nevertheless, he found himself facing a Megatron for the fate of the universe, as is the lot of all Optimus Primes, it seems. As one of the main characters of the cartoon, Optimus naturally got a lot of toys, too, including this Activator.

While I don’t own that many Activators myself, I am a big fan of the concept behind them. Smaller, kid-accessible figures that portray all the major characters from the cartoon (except Ratchet, for some reason) and transform at the touch of a button, much like the early Beast Wars Basic figures. Personally, I consider them a lot better than those 1-Step changers we are flooded with in current series.

Bottom line for this figure: It is designed for kids and does a good job as a kid-friendly figure, but it’s still articulated and detailed enough for an adult collector, too. Very nicely done. If they had found some way to include his axe, I’d have given this little guy an A-rating.

Rating: B+

Toy DB Link

Picture Gallery:

No comments