Clive Voice Actor Claims FF16 Saved His Life After Father’s Passing

The voice actor behind Final Fantasy 16’s main protagonist, Ben Starr, talks about losing his father and pouring himself into the character.

Image via Square Enix

Benn Starr, the voice actor behind Final Fantasy 16’s main character, Clive, recently appeared on Kinda Funny’s Games Daily and spoke with Tim Gettys and Andy Cortez about his time voicing this character. Close to the end of the session, Starr shared a personal story about losing his father during the production of the game.

Starr’s father passed away during production, and Benn talked about how he did his best to channel that energy into making the game and being as expressive as possible while playing Clive. Starr also claims that because of his creative outlet and how much of himself he poured into the game, working on it saved his life at this extremely tragic time.

Ben Starr Shares Personal Journey during Final Fantasy 16 Development

The discussion happened close to the end of the Kinda Funny Games Daily segment on June 15, 2023. There’s a clipped version being shared strictly focusing on Starr talking about the tragic loss of his father and how the creative outlet of working on Final Fantasy 16 was the best way to cope with such a heartbreaking situation.

The discussion occurred when Cortez pulled a question from the Kinda Funny audience and asked Starr if he drew any outside experience into his performance as Clive.

Starr admits that there was a lot of personal inspiration for the character. “My dad died during the making of this video game,” he says. “There’s a lot of loss that Clive goes through, and I’m sorry to get heavy, but it’s true. It’s amazing how much this game allowed me to process that loss and channel that loss into something good and creative, and the team was incredibly good at allowing me to be as expressive as I possibly could.”

Starr shared this to highlight why some of the lines that Clive gets feel extraordinarily raw and emotional, especially as the game continues to propel forward, likely into more of the story that players will see when the full game drops.

From what Starr shares, the creative outlet of working on the Final Fantasy 16 project was pivotal to his processing this ground-shattering moment in his life. It was a positive way to use the emotions he was grappling with and put them into something he loved, especially because it’s a project that his dad started him on so many years ago.

“The last time I ever spoke to my dad was on the way to recording this game,” Starr continued. “He was the guy who first bought me Final Fantasy 8.”

Additionally, Starr wished to talk about it and vocalize these feelings as he wants his father’s memory to be associated with the game. He channeled his father as much as possible during the production of Final Fantasy 16 and in his performance to ensure his father’s memory remained there and after the game ships.

When Final Fantasy 16 launches, we’re looking forward to hearing Starr’s full performance as Clive when it launches for the PlayStation 5 on June 22, 2023.