Skate 4 pre-alpha gameplay footage surfaces online — here’s your first look

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(Image credit: EA)

Around 30 seconds of Skate 4 gameplay has seemingly been leaked online, and the early indications are that fans will love it.

The short video consists of pre-alpha gameplay footage — which essentially means the game is in an early stage of development — and comes via industry insider Jeff Grubb. It shows a character model performing a variety of tricks including a kickflip and a grind, and also manoeuvring around the game’s world. There are even a few acrobatic front flips and a painful-looking bail throw into the mix for good measure. 

As this is pre-alpha gameplay footage, both the player character and the world are lacking textures, but Grubb notes that the developer is currently testing out this early build of the game in order to nail the “feel” before fleshing it out with more detail. This leak, while not quite showcasing how the finished game will look or play, does suggest a level of fluidity that Skate fans will no doubt be very pleased with. 

Crucially, this pre-alpha gameplay footage tells us two important things. Firstly, EA is clearly giving newly created development studio Full Circle the time it needs to create a game worthy of the Skate name. Secondly, it would suggest that the finished product is still some ways off. Grubb has previously stated he didn’t expect Skate 4 to launch in 2022, and that makes sense if the game is still in the pre-alpha stage. 

Skate 4, which will actually be called just Skate, was originally announced at E3 2020 by creative director Cuz Parry and game director Deran Chung. It came after years of online campaigning to get EA to greenlight a sequel to 2010’s Skate 3, which was the last game in the franchise. Very little is known about Skate 4 officially, and we’ve yet to see any real gameplay footage or even a proper trailer for the highly anticipated skateboarding game. 

For now, fans can pass the time by repeatedly watching this pre-alpha footage and coloring in the blanks themselves. Plus, the entire original Skate trilogy is currently playable on Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S via Xbox backwards compatibility, which makes it the perfect nostalgia hit for anyone who spent their teenage years pouring dozens of hours into the franchise. 

The wait for more concrete information on Skate 4 is definitely dragging, but considering us longtime Skate fans have waited 12 years for a new installment, we’ve got pretty good at being patient.

Rory Mellon
Entertainment Editor (UK)

Rory is an Entertainment Editor at Tom’s Guide based in the UK. He covers a wide range of topics but with a particular focus on gaming and streaming. When he’s not reviewing the latest games, searching for hidden gems on Netflix, or writing hot takes on new gaming hardware, TV shows and movies, he can be found attending music festivals and getting far too emotionally invested in his favorite football team.