Thanks to everyone for the insight and the anger management advice!!!
Looks like I'll do it the "right way" after all. I'm 0-2 as OL as it is, and if balance REALLY gets wonky, then the extra adventures will have to wait for a second playthrough or epic standalone battles.
Respect and appreciation,
If anything, I would think that playing all five of the Act I quests would hurt you more than it would hurt the heroes. Regardless of whether they win or lose, they'll have more gold to spend on Act II weapons, but you're likely to see them win the extra Act I quests anyway, since they'll be buffed up from winning the previous 3.