Release Date: July 2018
Price Point: $69.99
Retailer: San Diego Comic-Con 2018 & HasbroToyShop Exclusive
Accessories: Scepter of Sparks, Shoulder Armor x 2, Cannons x 2, Nexus Prime, Amalgamous Prime, Prima Prime, and the legendary 13th Prime
Official photos above and text below in italics are from HasbroToyShop:
It's not everyday that a robot who turns into a gorilla and rides a hoverboard becomes the leader of the Autobots. But that's exactly what happened when Optimus Primal won the first-ever Fan Vote Prime poll. When Optimus Primal becomes a Prime, he evolves to Optimal Optimus. Celebrate the fans' choice and the epic conclusion of the Prime Wars Trilogy with this figure that uses converting Evolution Armor to evolve from a 5.5-inch scale Optimus Primal figure to a 9-inch scale Optimal Optimus figure.
This convention edition offering is packed with special features:
4 Convention exclusive Prime Master figures: Nexus Prime, Amalgamous Prime, Prima Prime, and the legendary 13th Prime.
A Scepter of Sparks accessory: holds 4 Prime Master figures. Halo of Primus display: holds 12 Prime Master figures. Use it to create an epic display of Prime Master power. Additional figures sold separately/subject to availability.
- Includes Leader Class Optimal Optimus figure, 4 Prime Master figures, Scepter of Sparks accessory, and instructions. Special Edition packaging that fans can only get in this version.
- Transformers: Generations Convention Exclusive Figure
- Leader Class Optimal Optimus figure features premium deco and comes in special edition throne packaging
- Comes with 4 Convention exclusive Prime Master figures, a hoverboard accessory, and a Scepter of Sparks accessory
- The 4 Prime Master figures can fit inside the Scepter of Sparks accessory
- Store Prime Master figures in the Halo of the Primus above the throne -- there's room for 12 Prime Master figures in all
- Figure scale: 9 inches
- Ages 8 and up
- WARNING: CHOKING HAZARD - Small parts. Not for children under 3 years.
San Diego Comic-Con is a huge event where many toy companies take the opportunity to release exclusive figures. In 2018, Hasbro released the "Throne of the Primes" boxed set. This figure was a redeco of the upcoming "Power of the Primes" Optimal Optimus figure, based on Optimus Primal's powerful form shown in season three of "Beast Wars" (and now, the "Power of the Primes" cartoon). The set was in an impressive box complete with a "Throne of the Primes" cardboard insert for the figure to sit on. He also included a crown and scepter accessories truly showing Optimal Optimus as the "King" of the Jungle! This is all a direct result of Primal winning the first ever "Prime" fan vote, beating out other characters such as Arcee and Thunderwing.
While initially only available at San Diego Comic-Con 2018, this figure will later go on sale on HasbroToyShop August 13, 2018. Shortly after SDCC it was revealed that Takara Tomy would be releasing this set as part of their regular retail line in January 2019.
San Diego Comic-Con exclusives typically feature additional accessories than the mass release figures and this set is no exception. The Throne of the Primes set features two special accessories: a crown and the Scepter of Sparks. It also includes exclusive Prime Masters and a "Throne of the Primes" accessory. Those are covered in their own individual sections below.
The Crown is a new accessory that fits right onto Optimal Optimus' head. The center of the central crest features a Maximal symbol and all around it are sculpted jewels. The sides are reminiscent of the original Optimus Prime's head design, featuring circles on the sides that lead up to vertical protrusions on the sides. The crown is gold with the Maximal symbol and some jewels painted red. Other jewels are painted blue and green. The crown looks great and I love the inclusion of the Maximal symbol in the crest!
The other accessory is the Scepter of Sparks. This is large mace weapon that doubles as a Scepter. The mace is a callback to Transmetal Optimus Primal who wielded two mace weapons. The Scepter however has an added feature: Slide the section under the barbed area down and you can attach four Prime Masters to it! Each side has two 'Master pegs, allowing the Prime Master to stand on it, then you tuck the heads into openings right under the top of the weapon. Presumably this allows Optimus to wield the power of several Primes at one time, going beyond just using Prime Armor! The Scepter features a 5mm peg at the end, but there are also raised rectangular tabs along the handle for the larger Optimal Optimus figure to hold the weapon. The tabs fit into slots on the inside of Optimal Optimus' fists, allowing for a better grip.
The Scepter is gold plastic with some additional gold deco on top. The edges of the barbs at the top are painted red.
Throne of the Primes
The Throne of the Primes is part of the cardboard insert inside the box. Be warned: the Throne is taped down quite a bit to a background that is wrapped around it in the box. While it only took about fifteen minutes for me to carefully cut away and get it detached from the background, you do have to be careful so you don't slice off a tab by accident or slice into the Throne itself.
The background is interesting, featuring a jungle like setting complete with ancient Cybertronian style structures with a Maximal symbol on top. You can theoretically keep this attached to the Throne or separate it to use as a background by itself (which is what I decided to do).
The Throne is two sections put together. The Throne itself is a cardboard chair with plastic pieces attached to it. These plastic pieces match the contours of Optimal Optimus' body so he can sit securely in it. You could probably squish other Leader Class figures into it, but I would not recommend it. The cardboard has a series of cool illustrations on it. They look like metal panels with energy glowing from within and vines growing across them. Around the seat are drawings of the other characters who were up for the "Prime" vote: Arcee, Hound, Megatron, Shockwave, Star Saber, Thunderwing, Ultra Magnus and the "Unknown Evil". At the head rest portion of the seat is a Maximal symbol. All along the Throne are cracked and worn pieces giving it the appearance of some type of ancient artifact. It looks fantastic!
The back of the seat has a round wheel attached known as the Halo of Primus. This wheel featureds a plastic piece over it where you can store the Prime Masters in their Spark Modes. Each Prime has a specific slot assigned to them, denoted by the symbols printed on each slot. That said, the slots are just a clear plastic try and I imagine after pushing the Primes in and pulling them out enough times you will likely wear down the plastic so be warned. You can rotate the wheel around, but again, given that this is cardboard and plastic I would be very careful about turning it too much.
The Throne of Primes is a cool accessory and recalls the type of playsets from the Star Wars line in the 80's. I love the design printed onto it and having the Maximal symbol be so prominent is something I never thought I would see in the Transformers toy line again!
The Thirteenth Prime (aka "The Arisen") is a mysterious Prime. Mostly all that is know about him is that he is the thirteenth member of the original Primes.
This figure is a redeco and retool of the base sculpt that was used for Vector Prime, Alpha Trion and Quintus Prime. Specifically The Thirteenth Prime reuses the torso and legs from those figures. The arms, thighs, head and back plate are all new pieces. The new head and arms are significantly bulkier in appearance than the same parts on other versions of this figure. The thighs have ridged, vertical lines on them. The back plate now features a star like symbol. What I like about this retooling is that enough parts have been changed that at first glance this figure looks entirely new. I had to stare a bit at him lined up with the other Prime Masters to see which he shared parts with!
This figure is cast in blue plastic. Yellow pint is used on the back plate and arms. Meanwhile, silver fills in details such as the face, hands and symbol on his back. Overall the colors look nice and bright and he is very different than the other Primes.
Amalgamous Prime is a redeco and retool of Micronus. The robot mode is pretty much the same between the two. However the back plate has been changed to feature a symbol that includes several sharp, curved shapes in a pattern that almost looks like several parts coming together to form one being (which makes sense given his name).
Amalgamous is cast in metallic beige and gunmetal grey plastic colors. The plastic really sparkles in the right light and looks great. The face is painted gunmetal while the symbol on his back is painted yellow with a silver background. While he is mostly a redeco, the figure still looks very different thanks to how different the colors are from Micronus.
Nexus Prime is a redeco and retool of Alchemist Prime, featuring the same robot mode parts but a new "back plate" and Prime Symbol. The Prime symbol is somewhat cryptic, featuring several shapes around a central point (perhaps the "nexus"?).
Nexus Prime is cast in metallic copper and gunmetal grey plastic. The helmet section of the head is painted gold (not quite matching the copper plastic color). The same gold is used on the back plate and his symbol is painted a dull yellow. The metallic colors look great and give him a sort of retro, antiquated look that is really cool.
Prima Prime utilizes the same base sculpt that was used for Solus Prime and the later redeco of Solus Prime included with Repugnus. The robot mode is the same, but the back piece features a symbol with two large patterns and some smaller ones under it.
Prima Prime is cast in silver and light metallic blue plastic. The face is painted metallic blue. The back plate is silver on the edges with light blue paint on the symbol, matching nicely with the blue parts on the figure.
Being a "Leader Class Evolution" figure, this set includes a smaller figure of Optimus Primal himself before he evolves into Optimal Optimus (much in the same way Orion Pax "evolves" into Optimus Prime). While Optimus Primal does have an alt-mode, it is not a gorilla. Instead he has a vehicle form. Now, exactly what this vehicle is is up to interpretation. At first it looks like some type of shuttle or transport ship, complete with a cockpit in the front. However, this vehicle form actually doubles as a hoverboard for Optimal Optimus! This is a callback to the Transmetal Optimus Primal figure which had a mode where he rode on a hoverboard (this was also shown in the cartoon).
The front half of the hoverboard looks great. The cockpit section and the area right behind it looks like a typical shuttle you would see in a science fiction show like "Star Trek". The back is a bit less impressive since it is mostly made up of Optimus Primal's body so he has very obvious robot mode details just laying flat. Still, if you consider this mode primarily exists for Optimal Optimus to ride on top of those details are much less of a bother.
The front half of the vehicle features ports for the cannon weapons included with the figure. There is a Prime Master peg in the middle section, though the way it is situated the Prime Master has to kind of stand at an angle, but hey, it's a nice touch. Sadly, this is the only Prime Master peg on the vehicle. I would have liked a couple more for added play value.
This vehicle is black, grey and clear plastic. Black makes up most of the figure with grey making up most of the cockpit section. Paint colors on this vehicle include red, grey and white. Like the other Leader Class figures this one uses stickers for detailing. This includes machinery detail and Maximal symbols. The stickers look good, but on my copy of this figure a couple of the corners are a bit worn. Your copy of the figure may or may not have the same issue.
Transformation to Robot Mode:
- Detach the cannons if attached.
- On the back, swing the robot legs out to the sides and rotate them around.
- Swing the front half of the vehicle back, and attach it to the back of the robot.
- Swing the shoulder panels up.
- Swing the chest open and swing the head out, then swing the chest back in place.
Optimus Primal's robot mode is interesting. It has many of the same design cues as Optimus Primal's appearance in the "Beast Wars" animated series (and the "Power of the Primes" cartoon). These design elements include:
- The head looks just like the "Beast Wars" CG model including curved "horns" on the sides of the head and a mouth in the middle of the "mouthplate".
- The shoulder armor extends out to the sides instead of just wrapping around the arms.
- The chest has a unique armor design complete with a circular section in the middle and panels that extend out to the sides.
- The waist area has a circle with a star like pattern around it.
- The thighs are rounded leading to round knee armor. The lower legs have piston-like details connecting the middle of the legs to the feet. On the original Optimus Primal figure this was an actual working piece. Here it is a sculpted detail.
Overall the design looks fantastic. To me it looks like what Optimus Primal could have looked like on Cybertron before the Beast Wars. Perhaps the only part I really don't like is the giant back pack that the front of the vehicle mode forms on the back.
All the colors from the vehicle mode carry over to this form. The layout of the colors is heavily based on the original "gorilla" Optimus Primal toy from "Beast Wars". This includes the use of blue and silver on the head, grey and red on the chest and red and white on the legs. The figure looks fantastic. The choice of colors was spot on and the layout works perfectly.
Optimus has thirteen points of articulation. This includes three in each arm and leg. The head can also turn. Each fist has a 5mm port, allowing the figure to hold the cannon weapons either as blasters or club weapons.
I personally would have loved to see a beast mode worked into this mode, but I can also understand how that could have easily made it more complicated and not-cost-effective. Overall the figure looks great (back pack aside).
The Optimal Optimus design was a unique one among the history of Transformers figures. The design featured bits of a mechanical gorilla, two different vehicle modes and of course exaggerated robot mode parts. This new version of Optimal Optimus follows the original design very closely. Here are some of the details found on the original and this figure:
- The silouette of the character is pretty much the same featuring giant shoulders/arms leading to bulky shoulders and then a waist that narrows before the legs extend out again leading to clawed feet.
- The head design features a large crest and traditional "Optimus Prime" style designs including circles on the sides of the head and antennae sticking up on the sides. The mouthplate has an opening in the middle where the mouth is located.
- The shoulder section has two large disks on them leading to ball shaped shoulder joints.
- Each shoulder area features a wing on the outside.
- The hands are very large featuring extra long fingers.
- The torso features a cockpit from the vehicle mode.
- Several of the details on the legs are like the original Optimal including the mechanical designs on the thighs and the shape of the knee armor.
- There are rectangular panels on the sides of the lower legs. On the original these folded out as part of the ground mode but here they only serve as armor/leg pieces.
- The feet have sharp looking claws in front.
Overall I have always loved how weird Optimal Optimus' design is and I am happy the designers did not try to make the figure look more like a conventional Transformers figure.
While the original Optimal Optimus was a colorful mixture of colors (including blue and orange) this version is based on Optimus Primal's original "Beast Wars" colors. The main colors on this figure are black, silver and grey. Black makes up most of the figure, with grey and silver used on smaller parts such as the fists and shoulder joints. A bit of white plastic is used on the thighs. Paint colors on the figure include blue, silver, grey and red. Rounding out the details are stickers including Maximal symbols on his shoulders. Overall the colors look great and match up nicely with the original "gorilla" Optimus Primal.
Optimal Optimus has twenty six points of articulation, which is pretty fantastic by today's standards. This includes seven in each arm, five in each leg and even waist articulation.
Optimus' hands are not conventional ones with a 5mm fist port. Instead you swing his thumb out and there is a 5mm port on it so he can hold the cannons included with the figure (or any other weapons with 5mm pegs). If you want to replicate the look of the original Optimal's weapons extending out of his chest in the cartoon, swing down the cockpit on the torso to reveal two 5mm ports in the chest. Plug the cannons in and it looks great!
To round out the play features, the chest compartment can open up and inside is a Matrix! The sculpt is the same one used for Optimus Prime and Rodimus Prime. The handle piece is white and the Matrix in the center is light blue with the "casing" painted red. This is a fun callback to the way Optimal Optimus temporarily housed Optimus Prime's Spark in "Beast Wars". You can remove the Matrix casing in the middle and replace it with a Prime Master in Spark Mode or a Matrix casing from other Voyager and Leader Class figures.
Transformation to Beast Mode:
- Turn the robot head around and push it down.
- Separate the Optimus Primal piece and set it aside for now.
- Swing the beast mode head out.
- Swing the shoulder sections (including the large, circular parts) down.
- Rotate the forearms around, then swing up the thumbs and rotate the hands.
- Swing the wings on the arms down.
- Detach the shoulder armor pieces and attach them to the forearms.
- Rotate the waist section around.
- Push the upper arms in.
- On each lower leg, swing the stabilizer fins out.
- Collapse the thighs into the lower legs.
- Transform the Optimus Primal figure into vehicle mode, then swing the cockpit section forward.
- Slide the cockpit section into the opening behind the beast mode head, connecting the tabs on the cockpit to the corresponding slots on the main body.
- Attach the cannons to the "back pack" on the top.
Optimal Optimus' beast mode is unique to say the least. This update of the character features several of the same details as the original figure from the 90's. Most of these details (such as the arms and legs) carry over from the robot mode. However, others are different. These include:
- The beast mode head looks like a mechanical gorilla instead of an organic one. It features a helmet that wraps around the face down to a chin strap.
- The chest features curved muscle-like designs extending to the sides, angling upward.
- The dual cannons wind up on his back, sweeping up behind the head.
All the colors from the robot mode carry over here. The newly revealed beast mode head and chest feature black and grey, so no surprises there.
There are twenty four points of articulation on this figure. This includes seven in each arm and four in each leg. Surprisingly, his head can turn! You can also turn the waist if you move the back pack out of the way. You can detach the cannons and connect them to the 5mm ports on the shoulders.
Transformation to Vehicle Mode (From Beast Mode):
- Separate the Optimus Primal piece and set it aside for now. Detach the cannons for now.
- Straighten out the arms and rotate them so the fists are pointed up.
- Rotate the wings on each arm and swing them out.
- Close each fist and rotate the forearms so the armor faces up.
- Push the lower leg sections down a bit and swing the stabilizer fins out to the sides. This clears room for the next step.
- Connect the Optimus Primal section to the vehicle using the tab on the bottom of Optimus Primal to the corresponding slot on the back of the larger body's waist section.
- Attach the cannons to the top of the Optimus Primal section.
- Collapse the cockpit section against the front of the Optimus Primal piece.
- Attach the cannons to the top of the Optimus Primal section.
- Swing each shoulder section up to line up the arms/wings with the rest of the vehicle.
The original Optimal Optimus figure actually had two vehicle modes: an aerial mode and a ground mode. However this new incarnation only has an aerial mode. Sure there is a bit of a loss there. After all, a couple more parts, a few more hinges and the ground mode could have easily been achieved. Still, given cost limitations I can understand why an aerial mode was chosen since Optimus already has two other "ground" modes: the robot and beast modes.
This mode is not your typical aerial fighter. Sure it has wings and a cockpit, but the wings are attached to two giant arms and there are rockets on the feet in the back. Even as a vehicle there are clear "beast" influences in this mode and I love the design.
If you have gotten through this far in the review (or playing around with the figure itself) none of the colors here will surprise you. Perhaps the biggest difference from the other modes is how much of the detailing from the smaller Optimus Primal figure appears on the top of the vehicle.
There are some fun play features worked into this mode. Both arms have Prime Master pegs on them, allowing Prime Masters (or Titan Masters) to get a ride. Behind that section are the 5mm ports from the shoulders. You can attach weapons with 5mm pegs to them (including Prime Master Decoy Armor in weapon mode). There are additional ports in the back, under the stabilizer fins. I was happy to see this mode provide some interaction with the Prime Masters and their Decoy Armor. It adds some nice play value to the vehicle mode.
San Diego Comic-Con exclusives are meant to be special and this set fits the bill. The Throne, extra accessories and exclusive Prime Masters on top of a cool figure make this a fantastic set. By mid-August 2018 the figure will have already sold out from San Diego Comic-Con but Takara Tomy is planning its own regular release of this figure (which you can order from BWTF sponsor BigBadToyStore) so I do not recommend going out and paying scalper prices on ebay. Recommended!
- The ability of the Scepter and Prime Masters to interact is a great idea.
- The Throne accessory is beautifully designed (the same can be said for the background).
- Optimal Optimus is a fun update of a classic figure that retains a lot of the more unconventional design aspects of the original.
- The colors chosen for the Prime Masters are beautiful.
- I do find myself wishing Optimal Optimus had his fourth "ground vehicle" mode.
- The Throne accessory is cardboard, so it can be easily worn down if you are not careful.
- Some of the stickers on my copy of the figure are a bit worn at corners or edges.