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Uma Musume (“Young Filly”) Anxious to Exit the Paddock in “Pretty Derby”

Uma Musume (“Young Filly”) Anxious to Exit the Paddock in “Pretty Derby”

One of Japan’s most popular new anime games, Young Filly– known as Uma Musume (うま娘) in Japanese- has recently released a new series called Pretty Derby which is gaining lots of new fans regardless of whether they had a previous interest in horse racing.

It is available both as a mobile app and a PC-compatible version (see below for more details).

The race is on for two entrants from Young Filly with a lot on their minds, Image Sourced from Anime Uma Musume

The Story

Young Filly tells the story of the intense rivalries among energetic, young “horses” who appear in the human form of beautiful young women who compete on a horse racing track.  It is one of the latest anime to combine the trends of personification, or gijinka (擬人化), and transformation into beautiful young women bishojoka (美少女化).

Some of the characters from Young Filly, Image Sourced from Spice ePlus

There are no mares in this story.  The plot also revolves around trials and tribulations at a horse racing school.

The thoroughbred characters have names befitting of a racehorse.  Sometimes “Tokai Teio”, who has the voice of Japanese singer Machico, is pitted against “Special Week”, who has the voice of voice actress Azumi Waki.

They are joined by “Daiwa Scarlet”, who has the voice of voice actress Chisa Kimura, and “Silence Suzuka”, who has the voice of singer Marika Kono.  Punters will not be disappointed as the cast of characters includes plenty more novices and sprinters.

Fans’ Reactions

The popularity of Young Filly is growing rapidly throughout Japan.

Suppin tweeted, “I just started playing Young Filly.  This game makes time fly by!”

Horse fever is being passed down to the youngest generation as well.  Hiraku recently tweeted, “My four-year-old son used his legos to construct some of the horses from Young Filly.  His work is actually pretty good.”

Inspiration for Cosplay

Lately, it has become common to see cosplay inspired by Young Filly.  These two were recently spotted at the Oi Horse Racing Track near Haneda Airport.

This Young Filly was found in Tokyo’s Ikebukuro District, a local mecca for cosplay.

Recently spotted in Ikebukuro, Image Sourced from Mantan Web

There seem to be some unintended consequences of the game’s popularity.  The game may also be prompting a mini-boom in the Japanese delicacy of raw horse meat called basashi (馬刺し) which is served as sashimi.

Mashiro McQueen tweeted, “It has been a while since I last tried raw horse meat.  Thank you, Mr. Horse, every part was delicious.  The other day I did Young Filly cosplay, and today I had basashi.  I have to thank horses.  Tomorrow I will return to Gunma.”

Game Details

Name of Game

Uma Musume Pretty Derby (ウマ娘 プリティーダービー)


Role-Playing Simulation (育成シミュレーション)

See Also



Available Platforms

iOS 11.0 or higher, Android OS 6.0 or higher, PC:  DMM GAMES

Release Date

February 24, 2021 (mobile version), March 10, 2021 (PC version)


Free (in-game purchases)

At the moment, Young Filly is still only available in Japanese, but the manufacturer announced at the beginning of April that a Korean version will soon be launched.  They are also planning to sell a version with simplified kanji characters.  It is, however, unclear when an English language version will become available.

Screenshot from Young Filly, Image Sourced from Engadget

Game Maker, Cygames, Raking in Profits

Following the success of Young Filly, CyberAgent, the parent company of Cygames, which distributes games, is attracting attention. Their market capitalization has reached the 1 trillion Japanese yen mark (approximately $9.1 billion) for the first time since its listing in March 2000.  The main driver is its smartphone game, Young Filly, which is generating a monthly income of 10 billion yen ($91 million) and growing.

Thus, it is likely that the Young Filly franchise will continue to expand.  Perhaps the popular series will even be able to feature a triple crown in time for the next Japan Derby.

Links to Japanese Sources:,, and

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