Sad tidings today, with the news that veteran actor and voice actor Stephen Critchlow has passed away. The news comes to us via Big Finish, the British aural storytelling platform best known for producing Doctor Who audio dramas. Critchlow died at the age of 54.
Over his career, Critchlow performed for stage, screen, and radio. He was in over 200 BBC radio dramas and featured in 35 different Big Finish audio dramas, including Doctor Who – Time Lord Victorious: Echoes of Extinction and Doctor Who: The Sixth Doctor and Peri. Avid video game fans might also know him as the voice of Bana in Xenoblade Chronicles 2, King Doric from Dragon Quest Heroes: The World Tree’s Woe and the Blight Below, or Moff Sarek in Star Wars: The Old Republic.
Critchlow did an amazing turn as Count Edmont de Fortemps, one of the main drivers of the story in Final Fantasy XIV‘s Heavensward story campaign. Edmont was the narrator for most of Heavensward, as the story was actually supposed to be bits from his memoirs. As the head of House Fortemps, Edmont was key to bringing the Warrior of Light into the Heavensward conflict. He is also the father of Haurchefant Greystone.
Critchlow’s delivery of most of Edmont’s dialog was fantastic and important to establishing the English “War of the Roses” tone that Heavensward was trying to achieve. His contribution to Heavensward is so powerful that some players have made a small in-game memorial for Critchlow at Fortemps Manor on the Brynhildr server. Others have joined in on their own servers as well.
At the end of the main story campaign for Heavensward, Critchlow delivers this line: “Let the deeds written herein never be forgot, that they may inspire generations yet unborn to strive ever heavensward.” Rest in peace and godspeed, good sir.