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A few years back, you could walk into pretty much any toy store and find what appeared to be Lego Transformers on the shelves. Only, this wasn’t actual Lego - they were Kre-O bricks - and the sets were, well, they were fine for kids but of very limited appeal to those of us who remember the warring robots in disguise of the 1980s. Optimus Prime versus Megatron, and all that Jazz… and Soundwave, and Starscream, and Ironhide, and so on.
But this, this, is something else entirely. Lego has revealed a brand-new, fully licensed Transformers Lego set - and of course it’s a model of the Autobot leader, Optimus Prime, in his 'G1' guise. What's more, it's a model of Prime that transforms (sorry, converts) without the need to reassemble arms or legs, or any of that pulling-bricks-apart lark. Marking the first time that Lego has worked with the Transformers brand, Lego Optimus will be in stores on June 1, priced at £149.99. Which yes, puts him firmly in the adult-collector bracket of Lego appeal - but this set sure isn’t short on accessories.
First things first though, you want to see this Prime in action, right? You want to see a Lego set transform, yes? Watch the video below!
Made up of over 1,500 pieces, and measuring over 35cm tall in robot mode - putting it above the Masterpiece-level Optimus Prime toys on the market - Lego Optimus has 19 points of articulation and comes complete with his all-important Matrix, snugly contained in his chest. Don’t drop it around any hot rods, yeah? He also has his standard blaster, the Energon Axe featured in the cartoon episode ‘More Than Meets The Eye Part II’ (and never seen again in that show), a purple Energon cube, the rocket pack Sideswipe gave him that one time, and a display plaque. All that’s missing is his trailer (and Roller), really - though to be fair, most of us just put that thing in a drawer and forget about it.
Says Joseph Patrick Lyde, senior designer at the Lego Group, of this set and the collaboration that produced it: “It has been an honour and joy to work together with Hasbro to develop a Lego version of Optimus Prime! I am excited to see these two toy companies come together for the first time to celebrate the leader of the Autobots. Optimus Prime has become a pop culture symbol of courage, selflessness, and great leadership as well as an awesome toy that embodies the problem-solving and creativity skills that both companies value so much. It’s been a wonderful and challenging task to bring him to life using Lego bricks, especially making sure that he can shift modes without disassembly and stay true to his signature look and style.”
Naturally, both Lego and Transformers fans and collectors will wonder if the release of Optimus Prime will be followed by other characters from the 1980s toy phenomenon, which was supported by a series of Marvel comics, a cartoon and a full-length movie (also produced by Marvel). While the becomes-a-gun Decepticon leader Megatron almost certainly won’t be a contender, at least in his pistol form, the likes of the cassette recorder Soundwave (with some little tape minions, yes Lego?) and any number of other cars, jets, trucks and the like would be most welcome. And with Lego already doing a multi-part Voltron set, perhaps a combiner like Devastator isn’t out of the question? No breath will be held, but if this Prime is half as good in hand as it looks in pictures, hopefully it won't be the last Lego and Transformers crossover.
Find more information on Lego Optimus Prime at the official Lego website.
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