Solution - Bits Of Nomenclature, Zoned Appropriately

by Mike Sylvia and Joanna Cheng

Answer: Click here to reveal

Solvers are presented with four puzzles in the style of the word puzzle app Bonza. In accordance with the theme of the round, each puzzle's Mystery Clue (Chinese Zodiac, "Hot" Food, Door, or Follow) is one that a solver might reasonably expect to include the word "DOG", though none do.

Each puzzle includes an odd four-letter non-word "answer"; the next step is to realize that the four completed puzzles can be joined at these incomplete strings to form one overall grid. (This helps to disambiguate a few of the individual assemblies.) This produces the string REVERSE CLUE THREE. The third grid's clue is DOOR, so the answer is ROOD.