Today’s Connections Answer and Hints for March 26 (#294)

Don’t see the connection?

Today's Connections Answer and Hints for March 26 (#294)

Connections is a game from the New York Times that challenges you to find the association between words. It sounds easy, but it isn't—Connections categories can be almost anything, and they're usually quite specific. If you need a hand getting the answers, we've got you covered.

What Is Connections?

Connections is a puzzle game from the New York Times. The objective is simple: sort 16 words into groups of 4. Each group of words will be connected by some common idea or theme. That common element could be anything from the number of letters in the words to a common use for all the words. Once you're confident, select 4 words, then hit "Submit." You have only four attempts in total, so don't be too guess-happy.

Hints for Today's Connections Categories

Today's Connections Answer and Hints for March 26 (#294)

  • Yellow: Sounds Good
  • Green: Spring
  • Blue: Children and Pets
  • Purple: Vitamin D

What Are Today's Connections Categories?

If you're still struggling, the actual categories are:

  • Yellow: Musical Instruments
  • Green: Plant Growths
  • Blue: Bring Up
  • Purple: Solar Emanations

Today's Connections Answers

Today's Connections Answer and Hints for March 26 (#294)

Yellow: Musical Instruments

Bass, Basoon, Harp, Recorder

Green: Plant Growths

Bloom, Bud, Shoot, Sprout

Blue: Bring Up

Foster, Nurse, Raise, Rear

Purple: Solar Emanations

Corona, Flare, Light, Radiation

How Did We Solve This Puzzle?

The puzzle for March 26th wasn't the worst we've seen, but we did get a little tripped up right out of the gate. The words bud, corona, and light were all right next to each other, which immediately brought to mind beer. However, none of the other words were a good match for that, so we switched tracks.

Bassoon is unambiguously a musical instrument, and it seemed likely that any related words would have to be something else related to music. Perhaps there'd be other instruments, or maybe the words would be associated with classical performances. As it happens, guessing instruments as a category was right on the money. Today's puzzle also included the words bass, recorder, and harp—all instruments.

Next, we noticed that raise and rear are nearly synonymous, and figured we'd see if any other words matched up with those. You can also foster a child or an animal, and both young children and animals nurse. This seemed like a good enough reason to take a guess, and it paid off.

With fewer words confusing things, it was clearer that corona, flare, light, and radiation can all be related to the sun, and that bud, blood, sprout, and shoot are all related to plants.

How Do You Guess Connections Categories?

There is no quick, reliable way to approach Connections like there is with Wordle, since Connections isn't algorithmic. However, there are a few things to keep in mind that can help.

  1. Look for similar parts of speech. Are some words verbs and others nouns? Are some adjectives? Try mentally grouping them based on those categories and see if any other patterns jump out at you.
  2. Are the words synonyms? Sometimes categories will just be synonyms for a phrase, or very close to synonyms. Don't rely too closely on this, though. Sometimes Connections will deliberately throw in words that are sometimes synonyms to mislead you.
  3. Try saying the words. Sometimes, saying the words helps. One puzzle we saw included the words go, rate, faster, clip, pace, speed, move, commute, and hurry—all of which are obviously related to the idea of motion. However, when you say them, it becomes a little more obvious that only four (go, move, hurry, faster) are things you'd actually say to prompt someone to get moving.
  4. Expect the red herring. Connections usually has words that could be plausibly, yet incorrectly, grouped together. Take the words Bud, Corona, and Light, as an example. You might instinctively see those three words together and assume they're lumped together in a category related to beer—but they weren't.
  5. Look for distinct words. If a word on your board doesn't have multiple meanings or can really only be used in one context, try using that word as the basis for a category.

If you didn't solve this one, don't feel too bad—there's always tomorrow! And those words may align with a topic you're interested in, giving you a leg up on the competition.

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