Our group played the epic version on Sunday, my brother and I joined two other guys and formed a pick up group and were seated by Caleb (whom I had sign both of my encounter decks). Our group got to stage 3 but had difficulties once we got there. While questing our first card surged three times (same card) so we had plenty of creatures to deal with. Our little group had very little anti-treachery cards and when the time came we did not have any in hand. In the subsequent fight phase, I was dealing with two creatures whom each received an extra attacks via treacheries which followed the third and final extra attack via another treachery (there were only three and I got all three in a row). I lost two heroes due to these extra attacks but made a dumb mistake as I could have snuck in Gandalf (forgot) and saved one of my heroes. This caused the lead group to give me the tower to help me recover, but they threated out soon afterword.
Overall it was fun and it was exciting to play an encounter where you have no idea what to expect, just disappointing to have my bad luck affect other groups in epic mode.