The Transformers Animated toy line merges the more expressive design style of the cartoon with extremely poseable robot forms (to a degree which seemed pleasantly surprising even to Hasbro). Unlike the franchises immediately before it, there is no overarching, line-wide gimmick (such as Mini-Cons or Cyber Planet Keys). Rather, transforming is the gimmick, and the toys have other special features unique and appropriate to the character (such as triple-changing or interchangeable tools). While the designs originated with Hasbro and the Cartoon Network team, TakaraTomy stepped up to the plate to engineer the toys. The line debuted on July 1, 2007, at Hasbro's Future Products panel at BotCon.
Hasbro has, citing the strength of the movie toyline, postponed the release of the Animated toyline to June 22, 2008 in the US. Canada, however, saw a mass realease in early May 2008. However, the toys are now availible ahead of schedule in the U.S.
The core toys of this franchise will be available at most of the traditional size classes. They are listed here with examples from each.
An expansion on the Cyber Slammers subline from the 2007 live-action movie toys, Bumper Battlers feature "bump-and-transform" action. Hitting the front bumper causes the toy to change into robot mode, and pressing the toy's sigil activates sound effects and speech gimmicks.