Opening up the trailer in order to insert the missile platform is insanely tough at first. Thanks to the tabs being locked down super tight from the factory.
The objective is to unhook this tab. You will need some real force to pry it free the first time for some reason.
Missile platform properly inserted.
Drop down support struts to keep the trailer properly upright.
While it’s not official, Prime’s gun can also be inserted into the missile platform for storage.
Officially, Prime’s gun is supposed to be mounted on top of the trailer.
With the trailer equipped, Prime’s truck mode spans roughly 11.25 inches in length.
Base mode – As a homage to the original toy’s gimmick, Prime’s trailer can transform into a base mode.
Prime’s rifle can be mounted on various locations of the base mode.
Sadly, the set doesn’t come with his Mini-con partner, Sparkplug, to help man the base mode.
While the base mode is cool, there doesn’t seem to be much for Mini-cons to interact with. I would’ve like to see some sort of backwards-compatible play feature with the old Minicons.
Based on Optimus Prime’s appearance in the Transformers Armada series, where the Mini-cons, a race of Transformers that can unlock powerful abilities of bigger Transformers, have awakened on Earth. Optimus leads the Autobots as they race to recruit every Mini-con on Earth before Megatron and his Decepticons do.
Being the first “reboot” of the Transformers, Prime’s classic design is remade and now lacks windows for his chest.
Prime comes with a removable Matrix of Leadership in his chest.
Too bad he can’t hold the Matrix though.
His chest tends to pop free too often for me. It can get a bit annoying sometimes.
No waist swivel for Optimus in this mode.
Naturally, Armada Optimus Prime comes with his huge rifle. The vintage toy’s rifle actually featured a light up gimmick. Too bad they didn’t replicate it here.
Super Mode Optimus Prime
Combining with his trailer, Optimus Prime gains his Super Mode, greatly increasing his strength output and firepower.
Too bad the trailer no longer “auto-transforms” like the original toy. But at least we now get real articulation below the waist for the Super Mode.
Super Mode Optimus Prime’s eyes are supposed to be red in the cartoons. I guess making them yellow here is ok, since only Decepticons should have red eyes IMHO.
Super Optimus stands roughly 10.5 inches tall.
While the hands do open up, they no longer have the “retracting grip” gimmick we got with Commander Class Skyfire.
Sigh.. the red plastic “abs” of the Super Mode is a bit off-toned compared to the rest of the red from the cab.
Surprisingly, the super mode has a waist swivel as the basic mode does not.
I wish Hasbro gave us a proper multi-sectioned skirt plate here instead of making it one big panel.
In the cartoons, Super Mode Prime comes with a Multi-missile firing weapons array in his backpack. It’s faithfully recreated here (it doesn’t fire though).
Naturally, his big rifle still equips on his Super Mode.
Comparison with Earthrise Optimus Prime.
Overall, I love it. While it no longer has the cool tech gimmicks the original toy from 20 years ago had, it still looks great is a lot of fun to handle. Prime looks awesome in both modes and the addition of articulation below the waist is a welcome improvement as well. The combination is very solid and I can’t wait to see how Hasbro will pull of the Jetfire and Overload combinations down the road.
My 20-year-old original Armada Optimus Prime is stored in its box waaaay back in the storage room and I didn’t have the energy to go dig it out. I guess I’ll have to revisit that for comparisons later on one day.