Up first: Even though they worked on a handful of combat-free titles, Aki's greatest success came in the squared circle. Whether it was WCW, WWE, Def Jam, or M.U.S.C.L.E toys, you could count on Aki to deliver the best wrestling video games in the world. However, by the mid-2000s, the contraction of popular worldwide wrestling organizations left Aki out of the ring. In September of 2008, Kinnikuman Muscle Grand Prix 2 Tokumori came to the PlayStation 2 in Japan, the final gasp of life from the miniature grappler toy line in any territory.
The Change: In the biggest attitude changes in gaming history, Aki became Syn Sophia and delivered a much different game the next month, bringing Wagamama Fashion: Girls Mode to the Nintendo DS in October of 2008. Known in the US as Style Savvy, the ladies’ fashion game kicked off a new focus for the developer, working on that and another Japan-only franchise called Pretty Rhythm. However, Syn Sophia did lend its talents to a Japan-exclusive Yakuza spin-off that utilized the Def Jam engine and released on PSP in 2010. Who knows if this former champion will ever make a true comeback, or if it’s destined to stay in the make-up aisle?