• Sid Sivakumar

OOPS Meta Solution

Early this month, Matthew Stock and I asked you to find a two-word phrase as the meta solution to the Objectively Outstanding Puzzle Suite, a pack of 3×3 minis. As promised, here are the solutions to the meta.

If you haven't solved the suite yet, give it a try! Obviously, spoiler alert for everything after the line.

The first hint was the publication date (also found in the copyright field of the Across Lite puz files): 4/1/2020. Actually, that wasn't merely a hint — it nearly gave away the answer to the whole dang thing ...

Puzzle #8 was a cheeky 1×1 with entirely unhelpful clues: [Roman numeral] in the "Across" direction and [Early first-millennium year] in the "Down" direction. Since this could be any of several answers, it needed to be backsolved using the meta solution. The central location of the sole white square in Puzzle #8 suggested investigating the central square of each of the other eight puzzles:

Et voilà, the solution is revealed: APRIL FOOLS!

We received 27 correct responses, and two entrants have been randomly selected to win a 1-year subscription to the American Values Club Crossword and a custom midi puzzle each. If you won, you'll get an email in your inbox as soon as we figure out how best to deliver the prizes. Thanks to everyone who submitted!

If you enjoyed this suite, please do yourself a favor and check out Matthew's new crossword site, Happy Little Puzzles. Matthew's grids are super fresh and his clues will make you smile.


- Sid

P.S. Most of the minis were straightforward, but Puzzle #5 was a bit tricky. The Down entries all turned in the direction of the letter L: