Out of EA’s many franchises, the Skate series has one of the more unusual stories surrounding it. It was alive, thrived, then died all within the span of 2007 to 2010. Skate 3, the last entry, saw a resurgence of popularity because of YouTuber PewDiePie in 2014 and awakened a sleeping fervor for a sequel. Recently, EA turned the Skate 3 servers back on out of the blue. While EA has not commented on why they did this, speculation about an unconfirmed sequel has run rampant.
A few people on Twitter and YouTube started noticing that the servers came back online over the past few days. Players noticed that they could load their community parks, videos, and more that were previously dormant. EA never officially came out and said when they shut down the servers, but players have had spotty service for a few years now according to plenty of FAQ posts.
The possibility of Skate 4 has been hazy. EA Community Manager Daniel Lingen tweeted “#skate4” back in January 2017. Andrew Wilson, EA’s current CEO, rained on everyone’s parade by confirming in a financial call that they were “not presently making Skate 4.” The publisher has not made any comments about the possibility since.
This is not the first time Skate 3 has come out of nowhere. As previously stated, YouTuber PewDiePie brought Skate 3 back into the popular consciousness in 2014, nearly four years after its initial release. His large audience made the game’s popularity snowball in a way that made UK retailer GAME ask EA to print more copies. The game has since seen many social media campaigns with the efforts to convince EA to bring back their skateboarding franchise. The most EA has done since was make Skate 3 backwards compatible on the Xbox One in November 2016.
The resurrection of the Skate 3 servers does not confirm a sequel. While another studio could develop it, Quicklime Games (which comprised of multiple former EA Black Box employees) shut down in 2013 and EA has not made any formal hints about another entry in the series. But it is rather unusual for an old game to randomly have its servers come back online this close to E3. The timing is peculiar and could mean that Skate isn’t dead, but it’s safer to wait for EA to formally make an announcement. EA’s E3 conference is this Saturday at 11 am PT.