Remember how it felt to get lost as a child? 

Gone Mom game explores the daunting experience of trying to find mom from a maze of a supermarket aisles.  Everything looks so big and unfamiliar. Is mom lost forever? Navigate, pick items along the way – and find mom.

This game was done as a part of Global Game Jam 2021, in FGJ Helsinki Arabia Online.


Emmi Kärnä  
Laura Rantonen
Jenni Varila
Barbara Leal
Vili Saarenpää
Virpi Väinölä

My responsibilities in this jam game were level design, user interface and graphic design.

For the levels we wanted to create an ominous atmosphere, with aisles looming over the small child filled with items like in a warehouse.

To instruct the player I created store signs that showcase the controls, and also give an indication of the next department – allowing the player to play a memory game on which departments they have already crossed in their journey to find mom.

UI signs

When it comes to level design, we wanted to replicate the feeling of getting lost in a large store that to a small child, feels like a maze – all the aisles seem to lead to each other. The player is supposed to feel like they are walking in circles, yet there is a set structure to all routes.

In order to create the levels in a set order, I created a flow map of the levels, showing the different directions the player can take on their way to mom.

Level flow map

I also created 2D assets – pick up items, along with some guiding breadcrumb items for the child. The colours were set in Unity, and the idea was to change the colour of the breadcrumb items, depending on the colour of the next pick up.

All the items were themed around squirrels, as the child remembers the mom’s squirrel scrunchie and thus the familiar subject brings them comfort.

2D Art Assets

After each pick up, the level was supposed to turn even darker and more threatening. As the colours become darker and colder, the pick up items’ colours changed warmer – closer to the familiar red that the child remembers mom wearing.

Colour palette for the game

The logotype I created for Gone Mom:

Published by Virpi Väinölä