Yeah it was designed to intro characters to the audience/fans in Japan.
I did like how it showed Metroplex being built and how the combiners can switch limbs in battle to boost their might.
Also had the original cartoon continued, I wonder how they would have handled the fact that Optimus did not have the might to go against Galvatron?
Optimus vs Megatron = stalemate
Galvatron is Megatron upgraded, stronger and faster and thanks to that lava bath his circuits are damaged making him a berzerker.
Rodimus Prime however as the Chosen One and carrying the power of Optimus and all past leaders in him had enough power to handle Galvatron.
If the Matrix was fully charged Optimus could have used it to boost his power as he mentioned in Dark Awakening when he was pummeling Rodimus. Optimus' only advantage would have been if he was still coated in that special alloy that saved him from the plague. It could withstand heat and radiation thus rendering Galvatron's cannon useless and it withstood the shockwaves from an exploding sun.
I really should watch those later seasons again. I watched 1-2 and the movie a lot growing up, but never saw much of 3.
I finally picked up the Headmasters/Victory/Masterforce DVD somewhere many years back and I started watching it but I was finding it a tad hard to follow. Maybe if I read some annotated notes as I went along ...