MP-10 Convoy was a landmark release in the Masterpiece line, ushering in a new era of toys that all worked towards one unifying scale from it’s first release back in 2011. However it’s since become the poster boy for weird and wonderful repaints, with a total of *fourteen* uses so far! That makes it far and away the most recycled Masterpiece design, not that some of us are complaining. I, for one, can’t get enough of the things, and only just this week finally picked up the latest offering, MP-10DC! You can check out the unboxing of that toy along with a video comparison of all the various MP-10s here.
Today, in true Countdown fashion, we’re celebrating the latest release by ranking all of the available colour schemes so far! It should be stated that I don’t think any of them are *bad* – just some are better than others! Here we go…
#14: Golden Lagoon Convoy
Golden Lagoon Convoy was released as part of TakaraTomy’s 35th anniversary celebrations in 2018, and is a direct homage to the G1 cartoon season 2 episode, also titled The Golden Lagoon, where the Autobots discover the titular pool of gold liquid that makes them practically invulnerable. This release is technically not part of the Masterpiece line, and came out alongside Power of the Primes and Titan Returns toys in a strange twist. Still, he’s ripe for our list, even if he does take the bottom slot. I like this colour scheme quite a bit and the gold chrome sections really look excellent, but the plastic bits have a weird Caramac colour to them that stop him being a true Lucky Draw-esque knockout. Gotta love that bling though.
#13: Shattered Glass Optimus Prime
Next up we have one of Hasbro’s unique uses of the mould with the Shattered Glass release from 2016, which represents an evil version of Optimus Prime from a mirror universe. This one is interesting as there had already been a few knock offs of MP-10 doing the rounds using this colour scheme, although for my money the official toy is looking pretty menacing and is a great take on the design. It also includes a trailer (which a lot of repaints for this mould don’t) and has a couple of nice touches such as the smashed window and “Till all are gone” tampo on his side. It’s a real shame that the bits that are traditionally chromed, such as the bumper, grill and smokestacks, are all cast in unpainted plastic here, and ultimately the fit and finish is not on a par with some of TakaraTomy’s best uses of this mould, but it’s still awesome all the same.
#12: MP-10A Convoy (BAPE ver.)
The first of three BAPE tie-ins to be released is also the first one up on our ranking here, and this was a tough call as I actually really love this release! A lot of people turned their noses up at the sight of a green Optimus Prime, and particularly one which is a cross-promotion with a Japanese clothing store, but I think it’s still highly distinctive and a welcome alternate take on the design. All three of the BAPEs were released without trailers, which is a shame as their G1 counterparts came with them, but still the main body itself is gorgeous, the green colour is really rich and the camouflage detailing looks excellent. Perhaps the only reason it doesn’t register higher here is that it doesn’t have quite the same level of gorgeous painted finish that some of TakTom’s other releases can claim, but still this is a superior example all in its own right.
#11: MP-10B Black Convoy
It’s now the law – if you release an Optimus Prime toy, there *has* to be a black repaint. Has to be. So it was with MP-10, with this Nemesis-styled version finally hitting release in 2013. It eschews the MP-1 equivalent’s use of an Autobot logo to go full-on Decepticon, although in my honest opinion loses a little of the interest factor along the way. Still, MP-10B is a simply stunning release, and honestly I think needs to be seen in hand to be fully appreciated. It’s loaded with a superbly shiny black finish and looks very eye-catching with the red-tinted windows and silver stripes providing some welcome highlights. I think my slight boredom with Nemesis Prime repaints overall has probably hurt this fella’s chances here, but don’t let that tell you that this isn’t still a worthy release.
#10: MP-10R Convoy (BAPE REDCAMO ver.)
I still remember when this second BAPE toy was released, reading a comment online that (perhaps paraphrased) simply said, “Of all the colours they needed to repaint Optimus Prime into, red wasn’t one of them!” It’s a fine point and I can absolutely see how that conclusion was reached, but here’s the thing – MP-10R is a stunner in hand. I’ll be mentioning this a few times along the way here, but this is one of TakaraTomy’s releases that is simply *loaded* with thick paint, feeling incredibly premium as a result. Now it’s true that Masterpiece releases and paint don’t always mix for the best results, but in this instance it makes our red BAPE lad look amazing! Annoyingly my copy has a set of chest doors that often don’t want to stay properly closed but otherwise I have a lot of time for this guy.
#9: MP-10 Convoy
The OG, the one that started it all, the primary Prime. MP-10 is arguably one of the most important Transformers toys of the last ten years, having set the standard for everything that came after it, both in terms of the official line and pretty much every third party attempt trying to ape it. It’s a fantastic design and brings the iconic Autobot leader to life in a way we’d never seen before, although is now all-too familiar. Mixing a blend of influences including toy, comic and cartoon, MP-10 is extremely handsome up close, with a decent coat of paint present on the main red body of the toy and an attractive finish overall. He loses major points for the infamous “dead eyes”, but make no mistake – this one’s still a phenomenon.
#8: MP-10DC Convoy (Atmos Safari DUCKCAMO Ver.)
Look, I’m under no illusion that everyone will agree with me, but I think this latest release of the MP-10 design is bloomin’ marvellous. A tie-in with a corresponding pair of Nike Atmos Safari trainers, the so-called “Duck Camo version” is definitely one of the more out-there offerings, yet somehow it manages to combine all kinds of bizarre elements that shouldn’t work together to look really rather striking overall. Bright salmon-coloured wheels? Green-tinted chrome? Patchwork, mismatched green paint scheme? Burnt copper smokestacks? Unexpected camouflage pattern? Yep, Duck has all of that and pulls it off with aplomb. Here’s hoping the rest of the Atmos repaints see release too!
#7: Year of the Horse Optimus Prime
Another Hasbro release here, Year of the Horse Prime was released back in 2014 to celebrate the Chinese New Year of the same name. For many Western collectors, this was *their* Masterpiece Optimus Prime at the time, especially if they had missed on the more classic original release from 2 years prior. A lot of people will tell you that it reminds them of Generation 2 Prime somehow, which I think is mainly attributed to the stunning darker face section and those lovely baby blue eyes, although there are just as many other elements here that make Horse his own thing, too. The gold chrome takes a moment to get accustomed to but somehow this version works wonders overall. Oh, and that clear plastic trailer is a statement all unto itself!
#6: Masterpiece Optimus Prime
Hasbro’s take on the classic MP-10 Convoy design made a name all for itself on release in 2012, as it took an entirely different route to TakaraTomy’s original by featuring a noticeably brighter blue, an ever-so-slightly more vibrant red and, crucially, bright baby blue eyes. This has meant that a good portion of Masterpiece collectors prefer this version over the Japanese release as it somehow brings the character to life in vibrant, cartoony fashion a little more effectively. In truth the finish is not as polished as Takara’s, lacking the red paint in favour of bare plastic, but it’s still a winning colour combo and does a fantastic job at recreating the Autobot leader in toy form. TakTom have a reputation with some fans for often putting out the “superior” versions of various colour schemes, but honestly Hasbro took this round with their choice of palette.
#5: MP-10G Optimus Prime Ecto-35 Edition
Back when this toy was first announced, I have to admit that I was heavily sceptical. You could even say I was *not* ready to believe. The idea of a Ghostbusters-themed MP-10 tie-in sounded a bit naff, and for the first time I contemplated skipping a particular take on this design. Boy, am I glad I didn’t, because MP-10G is nothing shy of enchanting in hand! Featuring the largest number of newly-moulded or remoulded parts on any of these releases, there’s a surprising amount of effort gone into making it feel special. However, even putting the spooky association aside for a second, the colour scheme on the base figure is incredibly striking, instantly pulling off a combo of white, red, dark grey and even bright green to just look spectacular. I’m a big fan of details such as the translucent red on the hips and arms, but really everything here is just a surprising dollop of outright win.
#4: MP-10ASL Convoy (atmos safari LEBRON Ver.)
The first of the Atmos Safari trainer tie-ins, “LeBronvoy” is without a doubt one of the most eye-catching MP-10 releases of the lot. That burnt yellow paint job is just *sickeningly* good in hand, and really makes this toy stand out in any kind of line-up. There are a lot of smaller touches that make it sing too, including the signature grey animal print stripe, the subtle but pleasing blue highlights, and of course the “atmos” and “LEBRON” tampos. The “flesh” colour used on the legs and, um, other areas might cause a bit of comment, but make no mistake – LeBronvoy is a true stunner. Just a shame he didn’t come with a miniature basketball accessory!
#3: MP-711 Convoy (7-Eleven ver.)
If ever there was an MP-10 repaint that was unfairly mocked and derided, it’s this one. Released in early 2018 at the same time that the new MP-44 Conv0y mould was being announced, a lot of folks wrote off MP-711 and its convenience store-themed sponsorship as a bit of a joke, but as it turns out TakaraTomy had a plan up their sleeve. You see, whilst a lot of the promo photography features 7-Eleven logos on the main toy itself, it turns out that they’re just optional stickers that can be eschewed in favour of either bare arms, or indeed an Autobot decal that instantly makes him look much more like the original white Prime himself, Ultra Magnus! With that blue faceplate and head crest (not to mention a pleasingly premium paint job), it’s an unmistakable homage to Magnus’ classic inner-robot appearance, and looks entirely wonderful in hand. How convenient.
#2: MP-10K Convoy (BAPE BLACKCAMO ver.)
As we reach the upper echelons of this list it’s arguably all becoming a bit academic which one is better than the last, as at this point they’re all pretty marvellous in their own way. Yet the final BAPE entry is one that really shines when you see it in person, despite perhaps being an oft-overlooked release online. Although it’s called “black camo” by TakaraTomy, this guy is covered in an absolutely wonderful layer of thick warm-grey paint, and simply oozes charm with some muted but surprisingly effective blue highlights. It’s by no means the most obvious, the most gaudy or even the most colourful example on this list, but there’s just something quietly understated about MP-10K that never fails to impress when you see it up close. This release was no doubt also partly responsible for nudging MP-10B down a peg or two, but really he puts a number of his other mouldmates in the shade too. Oh, and yellow eyes FTW!
#1: MP-10 Convoy Mode “Eva”
There could honestly be only one. Released in 2014 as part of a Transformers × Evangelion crossover, “Eva” was limited to just 1,000 copies but is special in many more ways that just its limited availability. It’s sporting the classic Neon Genesis Evangelion purple colour scheme and is offset by more highlights and surprising little touches than I think I’ve ever seen on an equivalent toy. And hey, the result is utterly, utterly bizarre and by all traditional metrics really shouldn’t work, yet somehow this guy comes together as quite simply the most stunning rendition of the MP-10 mould we’ve seen so far. It’s boasting a finish that cannot help but turn your head to glare at it whenever it’s within sight, with those vibrant green sections being an assault on the eyeballs especially. The trailer section is an absolute marvel all unto itself, with NERV-inspired tampos aplenty, meaning that the overall package here is the very definition of breathtaking. Simply, completely and undeniably wonderful.
So that’s our list. Do you agree with the order?