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Series: Beast Wars
Allegiance: Maximal
Categories: Ultra
Year: 1996

Move over King Kong, Optimus Primal is ready to rock! The heroic leader has bio-genetically re-engineered his body structure into a gargantuan robotic gorilla! Cybernetically fused musculature has enhanced strength to super-powered levels. Shoulder-mounted, mega-blast missile cannons launch devastating attacks upon foolish Predacon invaders. When they force him to fight, they force him to win!

Robot Mode: An ultra-sized toy, Optimus is a huge fighting machine in robot mode with lots of fun features. In his right forearm he carries a morning star, his left arm opens up to reveal a double-barreled missile launcher. Two more missile launchers can deploy from his back to rest on his shoulders and he carries two blades (of which I only have one) that can be tucked away on his back as well. A lever on his back can make his arms spin about, either thumbing his chest gorilla-style or thwirling his blades. The look of the robot is very show accurate, right down to his Optimus-style head, and leaves little room for complaints. Posability is also very good. Bottom line: A very, very good robot mode.

Beast Mode: Optimus becomes a gorilla. The ape looks pretty realistic, sporting a big head, a broad cheast, long arms, and relatively short legs. Except for the arms all the robotic parts are safely hidden away, making for a very organic look. Posability in beast mode isn't too great, but he can also use his thumb-my-chest lever here, making for fun visuals. Bottom line, a good beast mode that looks like what it's supposed to look.

Remarks: The first Optimus Primal of the Beast Wars series sported a head that was a dead ringer for the classic Optimus Prime, but quickly became a character in his own right. The toy shows a lot of love for detail, sporting all the weaponry Optimus had in the show and then some. The beast mode looks a little stale in comparison, but is still pretty good.

Bottom line, the first Optimus Primal toy is at least as good as its two successors and quite a bit better in terms of play value and detail than most G1 figures.

Rating: A-

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