5:36 PM, Wednesday, December 6th, 2017:
I'm trying to be objective here. I really don't like the subjective bullshit that parents throw on their kids. No, your kid isn't great, he's doing what all kids do. No, your kid simply had access younger, he's not necessarily special. Kind of like we don't really know if Cam was "special" at putting when he was making putts at 1 and 2 because who the hell else has that kind of access to a minigolf course? So I let it go... just move on. We'll know in time.
Here's Cam's history with video games: first two years of his life he really didn't play them. However, in his 2nd year he did WATCH them. And we noticed that he would go down Gameplay Video Rabbit-Holes on YouTube frequently. I mean, had to pull it away from him. So I handed him a controller? Total mess. Couldn't do it. Which is fine. He was 2.
Super Mario Run comes out and THAT he can do. Even at 2 he was rocking that game. For those that don't know, it's a one finger game (which surprisingly and creatively gets challenging) and it taught Cam everything about platforming. But 3D Mario was not happening. (Vienna btw, never showed any care one way or another).
We cut to the Nintendo Switch. Cam is now 3. I give both of the kids the little controllers and Vienna can control it, Cam's thumb is a mess. Thank the fuck christ for the assisted steering and assisted gas in Mario Kart because without it, it was PAINFUL to even attempt. Neither of them have the left-thumb dexterity to control the stick in a 3D world. August turns into September and Mario Odyssey is now a month away. So, I decide to bring out all the old Nintendos.
We had a good week. And, incredibly, Cam finished the first level of Super Mario Bros. Not particularly hard, but this is where all that Mario Run really helped: he understood what was happening and what he was supposed to do instinctively. Not kidding, hours of just watching gameplay videos of Mario games. He figured the mental part out, but I figured it would be years until the dexterity caught up. From what I saw online 5 was about the time.
Mario Odyssey comes out t the end of October and he watches me play through it. I handed him the controller and he started to "get it". He wasn't making big jumps, but he could run around, go in and out of Mario's ship and change clothes (which he and Vienna did for more hours than I could handle - seriously hundreds of clothing changes to much laughter) and he got good enough I figured I'd make him his own game file and he could play around.
Then he started to really make things happen. You could see his brain moving really fast and getting frustrated with the controls, but he wasn't giving up. I'd grab the controller and help him through stuff but more and more he was attempting stuff. Then we got to the New Donk City level at night and I watched him slowly walk across a construction beam, while it was moving, in the rain, to get one of the moons. He kept going and did all sorts of acrobatic shit and I was stunned. I kept looking at him and his fingers (which could barely get to the right stick for the camera) and when he went to bed, I handed the controller to Talya and explained what he just did and asked her to do it. She thought I was lying that he had accomplished it. She immediately fell off and then looked at me like "Oh come on, he didn't do THIS". But he had.
So we kept going and got to Bowser and he did a good 50% of it before I took over and I turned to him and said: "We're gonna start over. Completely from scratch... and I'm NEVER touching that controller. I want to see if you can actually complete this game at 3 years old." He said OK, and tonight he did just that.
Now, it should be noted that "complete" is strange with this game. You can complete the story mode with 15% of the Moons. Also, several of these moons are painfully simple to achieve. Still though, Ya need 125 of them and it takes some dexterity. There is an assist mode that allows you 6 hits instead of 3 which I put on simply for frustration purposes. That's what I think most parents realize quickly about kids and games: they get angry QUICK, they get frustrated IMMEDIATELY and it's that maturity that is the biggest hurdle to doing "older" things. You have to be able completely fuck up and keep trying. Hard to explain to 5 year olds. Easier to explain once they're passed the age of reason (6ish) and the whole world opens up. So at 3? Yeah, I'm giving him the "6 hits" over "3 hits" so he keeps trying. Even with that? Dude, we had some moments...

I wasn't involved too much at the beginning. Gave him moral support. He pretty much knew where everything was because he saw me do it once, and we did it together once, but now? He had to control EVERYTHING. The camera being the hardest part because his fingers literally can't get to the camera stick without taking his hands off the grips. It's crazy he can even do it and keep going, but he did.
Thankfully he could avoid a couple bosses by getting other moons (seriously the way this game is structured is wacky as hell - no idea why they made it like this) and we found ourselves at Bowser's Kingdom and by this point I feel like Joe Jackson yelling at Michael. He's clearly overwhelmed, I feel awful for yelling and it's a bit of a mess - but at one point? We look at each other and he gets that we're on a team. I keep saying "dude, you can totally quit here and we can try again later" and he won't have it. For 45 minutes, in a fight that you can do pretty simply in a bout 5, he did it repeatedly until he finally beat it. We hugged and I apologized and he thanked me and it was an emotional MESS. Bonding moment for sure, but he grasped how big of a deal it was (I mean, it really isn't) and he didn't back down and he kept trying. I mean, he tried probably 40+ times to do a certain pattern in order to get to the top of this robot to butt stomp some bad guys. He's 3. That's really, really intense to me. I don't know any kids that age willing to do that. Vienna does something twice and it doesn't work out? "I'm done!" Pleasantly, mind you, but it's not fun to her to not be good. With her we're constantly trying to tell her that not everything will come as easy as drawing does for her... ya gotta give stuff more than one or two shots. Cam is the opposite. He's IN THERE. HE WILL DO THIS SHIT. Brother was actually whimpering he was so frustrated... and every time I said "DAWG YOU CAN LET IT GO MAN" he would shake his head and say "I got this."
At 3.
I did actually document the end and I wish I had more footage of him beating the whole game. I really didn't think he'd be able to pull off some of this stuff and whenever there's a next time I'll be a bit more studious in how I document it but he absolutely, 100% by himself beat that game. The next thing to do would be for him to pull it off without being in Assist mode, but this kid needs a break to run around in the game and have fun. There's still so much more he can do in the game (he skipped the really intricate shit) and he needs a lot more skills to achieve those even with the assists on. What is cool however? We can finally race each other in Mario Kart with NO assists and he's starting to understand the powersliding. He's very good at processing video games. 
I hope he looks back at this in a couple years as a cool memory.