Castle Ravenloft had an adventure that you could solo, presumably to help learn the rules through actual play, as I couldn't imagine surviving on your own for more than a few turns. Likewise, Wrath of Ashardalon has a small adventure in which you must navigate the halls until you find a secret entrance to escape. After reading the adventure, I noticed that the escape tile is always the seventh. I decided to give it a try today, figuring that having two healing surges to myself I could at least scrape by, especially considering that you don't have to kill a boss monster: just get the fuck out and you'll be fine.
To make this even more challenging, I went with the dragonborn wizard, taking the spells arc lightning, hypnotism, shock sphere, and mirror image. You automatically get hurled breath, which is a nice way to get a free ranged AoE attack. I'd considered taking wizard eye, but I'm not sure if it lasts only one turn, or forever.
With nothing to do on round one, I decided to cast mirror image and stay put to explore. Mirror image boosts your AC by six points, and is reduced by two each time you are hit. There's no mention of duration, and figured I might as well do something interesting during my hero phase besides waiting for a monster to bum-rush me.
Ugh...why did it have to be snakes? Their bite adds the Poisoned condition, which ensures that you'll lose at least two hit pionts if you get hit. To make things worse, I drew a black tile. Fuck. With no XP to cancel it, I also get sidelined with a whirling blade trap, which meant that now I got to eat two attacks during my villain phase. Thankfully, the snake missed, but the blades hit, meaning my mirror image bonus went from +6 to +4, and I took 2 damage.
Fast forward a few turns, and I'm down a healing surge, spawned a gibbering mouther, and mirror image is out. I didn't get a chance to explore during turn two, and got nailed with an arrow (I think). Oh, and I'm dazed. The only upside is that I got lucky on disabling the whirling blades.
Cultists have never been remotely scary, except these guys carry poisoned daggers. When a single point of damage counts for almost a fifth of your total health, that's a big deal. I manage to take them both out with arc lightning, and eat another encounter that I forgot about (but probably did damage). Down to my last few hit points, I'm fucked, but I keep exploring and hoping that a kobold doesn't do me in.
Yay! A white tile. This just means I get to stand there while a monster skewers me, but which monster, I wonder?
I fucking hate duergar. With this guy, if you aren't on the tile he's on (and how could you be?), he explores. And draws a monster. Technically, it's already my villain phase, so I don't activate the cultists. I did, however, draw two long hall tiles, which means that now I can see the light at the end of the tunnel. Unfortunately, I've got only three hit points left, and if I get hit by the cultists, I'm pretty much done for.
So, I dash by the duergar and kill the cultist first with arc lightning (also damaging the duergar in the process), and get a fucking tome of experience. Would have been handy a looong time ago. Since I didn't explore, I draw an encounter card, which ends up spawning a goddamned bear with a treasure token thankfully some ways away. I'm not going to go for it, obviously, and you don't keep the treasure, and I'm guaranteed to die even if I did get it. Also fortunately, the duergar doens't move and attack, he just moves.
I just realized while writing this that I could have double moved and gotten out last turn. At any rate, I just cancelled the rolling boulder trap that I triggered with the plethora of XP I'd accumulated through this hellish trial and managed to walk out on the next turn. Fuck, that was bullshit. I only won through sheer luck. Had I not gotten a pair of long hallways back-to-back, I would have been screwed big time.