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Series: Energon
Allegiance: Autobot
Categories: Leader
Year: 2003

Those who threaten peace will fall in pieces.
Optimus Prime is the powerful and courageous leader of the Autobots. Along with his incredible strength, he possesses great wisdom and believes that freedom is the right of all sentient beings. He has vowed to fight against the evil Decepticons in their quest to plunder Earth of its vast Energon resources. Always in favor of peace, Optimus Prime will not hesitate to use his great powers and vast arsenal of weapons to stop Megatron and the Decepticons from threatening the universe.

Robot Mode:Optimus' basic robot mode has been the centre of much discussion on the internet, as it is (or looks, at least) very tubby. It's not as bad as it appears on the images, but it's still atypical for a Prime. Also, the legs are a bit too spindly for my taste, especially the flat feet bother me a bit. All in all, though, Optimus is still a robot with a classic look and very posable to boot. The first versions of this toy had a mouth set into the mouthplate (reminiscent of the 1st Season Beast Wars Optimus Primal), but thankfully that got fixed by the time I bought mine. Bottom line: Not the best Optimus out there, but still decent.

Alternate Mode: No surprises here, Optimus Prime transforms into a truck cab. The cap looks a lot darker than the classic versions, thanks to lots of black on the sides. I am a bit bothered by two things here: One, the head doesn't go all the way down, meaning it sticks out a bit on top of the cap. Second, the 'antenna' (really the helmet Optimus wears in Super Mode) looks ... well, pretty bad. While the truck mode isn't bad per se, it's definitely one of the worse of the Optimus trucks.

Optimus pulls a trailer in this mode. Unlike earlier incarnations this trailer does not transform into a battle station or combine with Optimus into his Super Mode, but rather serves as a transport / base for four separate vehicles, the OP Force.

Partners / Add-Ons: Optimus comes with four extra vehicles, the OP Force. The four vehicles are a fire engine, a submarine, a helicopter, and a drill tank. There isn't really that much play value in the four in vehicle mode, though the designers did try to make each more than a simple brick. The helicopter's rotor spins, the fire engine's ladder extends, the drill head spins as well. Only the submarine doesn't really do anything in this mode. The four can stow away in the trailer, which can transform into a kind of base tower (called 'Energon Tower') for them.

Combiner Modes: Optimus combines with his four OP Force vehicles in classic G1 combiner style. Optimus becomes the torse, the four smaller vehicles become the arms and legs. There is no restriction on which vehicle becomes which, all can serve as right or left arms or legs. Optimus' head gets a helmet, as the antenna from the truck mode wraps around it. The resulting robot looks pretty decent despite the odd mix of colours and is surprisingly posable. My only real complaint here is the head. It doesn't look like a bigger head, but rather like a small head with a huge helmet. The helmet also restricts the head's motion, it can only turn sideways a little bit. All in all, though, a great combiner mode, much more fun than the basic robot mode.

Optimus can also combine with Omega Supreme (see Omega's review for pictures). Basically his folded-up truck cap mode with only the head extended becomes the center of Omega's body, like putting on a kind of huge armour. The resulting combiner, named Optimus Supreme (though I would have preferred Omega Prime in memory of RID), doesn't look that different from Omega Supreme, except that the head of Optimus has now replaced Omega's and the yellow panel that formerly covered the area between Omega's shoulders is now upright. This gives Optimus one hell of a blind spot to his right, but the designers took the time to add some details to the panel, so now it looks like a kind of missile launcher. Nice touch.

This combined mode can be enhanced further by adding Optimus' OP Force vehicles to the mix. Two can attach to the legs, one to the right arm (the drill makes the most sense here, IMO) and one to the right shoulder. Optimus' own weapon (and other Energon weapons) can attach to the left arm. The result is one heavily armed giant, but it looks a bit overcrowded in this mode. I like it a bit more streamlined, so I usually leave the OP Force vehicles off.

There is another combiner mode for Optimus, utilizing Wing Sabre, a toy that has only come out in Japan so far as part of the Superlink line. Basically Wing Sabre splits into four parts, which substitute for the four OP Force vehicles. The combination robot is called Wing Optimus. If Optimus uses Wing Sabre's upper body parts as arms, he gets huge wings. If he uses Wing Sabre's legs as arms, he becomes a heavily armed artillery machine. I like the latter mode a bit better, but both look pretty cool.

Finally you can mix and match. You can, for example, enhance Wing Optimus with the OP Force Vehicles, as Wing Optimus' fist are a fully compatible fit. So you can extend his arms with two of the four vehicles and the other two can be applied to the shoulders if you fold out Optimus' small robot arms. These are not a perfect fit, but they hold. Alternatively you can just attach two normal guns or Energon weapons to the small robot arms to give Wing Optimus (or Super Mode Optimus for that matter) additional firepower.

And, since it was a big part of Armada für Armada Jetfire and Armada Optimus Prime to powerlink, you can improvise a powerlink with Energon Jetfire, too. Just fold back Jetfire's upper body and place Optimus in the grip of his opened-up chest pincers. It's not a very stable fit, but doesn't look half bad.

Remarks: Optimus, much like Landmine, is one of those toys you have to actually hold in your hands in order to appreciate it. The first pictures I saw of it left me with a bad feeling, as Optimus looked extremely fat and tubby on them. Looking at the toy with my own two eyes, he is still not exactly slim, but it's a far cry from my first impression. Like with many recent Optimus toys, though, the real play value lies in the many combinations he can enter with other toys. And Optimus excells here, being able to combine with his own support vehicles and two other Energon toys (Omega Supreme and Wing Sabre) into completely different robots. That still doesn't make him the best Optimus out there, but still makes for a pretty decent toy.

Rating: B

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