After watching the Patreon video, I’m crossposting my comment here for a wider audience:
With a character like Berg, whose desires and ambitions have been squashed: if that’s all they are, that might make diegetic sense, but it’s boring from a narrative perspective. It needs to be depicted as a source of conflict to be interesting.
What would make it interesting is if Berg not having anything he wants for himself isn’t something people simply accept, but instead, it becomes a challenge he needs to overcome. Not being able to self-actualize is the tension, but it needs to be building towards some sort of resolution, or else it seems like Berg just has no reason to be there.
In Burning Wheel terms, he is playing into that Broken trait, and he needs to work towards his Deeds point moment, where he turns it around and realizes he does have the power to enact change and live for himself.
On the other hand, a story where Berg remains forever agentless, pulled around by the whims of others, could be a story of failure. But to make either that success or failure resonate, it needs to feel like that tension is moving somewhere first. It needs to become conflict, and not just remain a background assumption.
I think it is the lack of motion on that front that frustrates people. I am happy to see Zeke begin poking at it, and I hope Max will respond by getting Berg to question his depressed worldview.