I just found out that my "local" Barnes and Noble (30 miles) has a copy of the starter set. I'm going to pick it up this afternoon. Which expansions and how many would people suggest I pick up when I get the game? I'd like to keep a balance in the games, but I also don't want to miss out on limited edition sets (Aluminum Falcon). On the other hand, would you recommend I wait for a new edition of the rules if they're imminent (hence the shortage of starter sets).
I don't think that FFG has really said for sure what's going on with the Core Sets, but most folks (including me) are assuming the current Core Set is going to be reprinted rather than making a Wave 2 Core Set.
It really depends on what ships you want to field. If you want to field more than 1 X-Wing and more than 2 TIEs, then I'd suggest picking up a 2nd Core Set as it's cheaper than buying the ships individually via the expansion blisters (although the blisters do contain cards that are different than the cards included in the Core Set). You'll also end up with an extra set of dice which is nice, a second set of templates that's super handy if you're planning on teaching someone else how to play, another range ruler, etc.
If you're more interested in fielding the Falcon, Slave I, A-Wings, TIE Interceptosr, TIE Advanceds, or Y-Wings, I'd suggest buying one Core Set and then purchasing whatever ship expansions you want along with an extra set of dice.
All the ships are viable for thier points in this game, though some are more acessible or easy to use for a beginner than others (largely because of named pilots and their abilities).
If everything seems pretty cool to you, I'd go with what Picasso said, but keep in mind, the Wave 2 stuff will likely be out in a month-ish if any of those ships might influence your opinion on what you want to push around on the table.
To give you a ballpark idea, the Tournament Standard for points is 100. Currently (Wave 1, in other words), most Rebel players field 3 or 4 ships. Most Imperial players have anywhere from 5-8 ships. More precise info for the Rebels can be found here-
and here for the Imps- http://home.comcast....ml?scroll=false
Both of those links include the Wave 2 stuff.
Hope that helps! It's a great game; have fun playing it!