i own all sets to date and i shall give my own views on this…im in a hurry so sorry grandspleen if i repeat anything you say
after the mirkwood cycle, we got khazad dum, which was 3 quests of medium difficulty that took us through moria several years before the actual dwarrowdelf cylce. the player cards were all dwarf based
after this the dwarrowdelf started with first taking awen through the mountain pass to rivendell. this storyline was in the first two pacsk- redhorn gate and road to rivendell. this kicked off what i think is the main theme of the cycle….not dwarves (of which we got many) but noldor.
there are some extremely powerful noldor cards in the cycle, elrond and glorfindel shining as two of them. after we reach rivendell we are sent back into moria via the west gate where we meet the watcher, then we have 2 packs pretty similar of running around getting lost inside, then we battle the balrog.
all together i really liked this cycle, however i think while its player cards were better than mirkwood, its playability was not….the underground didnt transfer well i think. thats not to say the quests are bad….it just ones like the long dark get old quick
after that we had the saga pack 1- the first hobbit pack. this took us to the riddle game with gollum and is very good, albeit very hard (i would not recommend anyone without a good card pool getting this)
the card pool was mainly dwarven, really solidifying dwarves as the most developed upon race in the game so far.
there is a 2nd pack coming in a few months……i think it is obvious that they are coinciding this with the film releases…a little annoying to 'anti-filmys' like me, but i see that its a good idea.
there was battle for laketown POD which was in gencon event- this has just been released and is just about impossible to win
then lastly we have the hiers of numenor deluxe pack coming soon, and the subsequent cycle, which i cant remember right now. it looks amazing and wil concentrate on gondor. it seems like it will be giving tactics a new life with keywords such as 'siege'
this new cycle really seems to be the pack that will freshen the game…it seems like it will working differently,eg. using attack stats for questing
now which ones for you to get- i would say, as i always do…go in order
this is because if you have done this already then you may as well finish…im a theme player so this appeals to me, however it may not to you.
another reason is that there are cards in later packs that are almost destined to be used with cards already brought out….they will lose their effect if you dont have the related cards. also the song cards are really key to multisphere deckbuilding
also its worth pointing out that, despite the last mirkwood pack- return to mirkwood, being a horrible solo quest, it is worth getting for the hero- dain
dain will be extremely useful for the following dwarf packs, and he really increases every dwarf's usability