If you follow any G1 continuity to its conclusion, Optimus Prime is alive. After "rebirth", he rules a golden Cybertron. If you follow Japanese continuity, he is reborn as Star Convoy. If you follow the Marvel comics, he lives on at the end of G2 #12. Even DW and IDW comics do not see the death of OP. But in Beast Wars, 300 years in the future of G1, Optimus Prime is dead, replaced instead by a Prime Council. And where did all of these other Primes come from in that 300 year span? They look like this: Here is my theory: Optimus Prime leads an Armada of ships against Decepticons near a wormhole. Optimus battles Galvatron aboard his ship. He and his ship are critically injured. Galvatron abandons the ship just before it is sucked into the wormhole, exploding in the process. Many believe that Galvatron killed Prime, but some are not convinced. Perceptor theorizes that Optimus may be alive in another dimension. Similar to the Armada comic plot, he sends out a dimensional tracker to search for Optimus Prime and bring him home. The tracker never finds the original Optimus, but instead finds 8 other Primes from others dimensions torn asunder by Unicron. These Primes form the Prime council, and unite Cybertron. One of the Primes is even a Decepticon! They vow to protect this universe from the threat of Unicron at all costs. -OR- Here is another story: The Constructicons invent a new weapon called a "spark splitter", which is capable of directly targeting a TFs spark. During a battle, the spark splitter is fired. Optimus Prime sacrifices himself for another Autobot and takes the blast head on. His spark is split into 8 pieces. The spark splitter is destroyed and the Constructicons captured. The Autobots manage to preserve the 8 pieces of Prime's spark. Although they cannot be merged, they can be used to give life to 8 new Primes, who all inherit a piece of Prime's personality. What do you think?