We've got the first comfirmation that The Hobbit sets are definately comming soon. We all knew they were inevitable, but stores (My local one, and several others accross the North West that I know of) have now been told as of saturday, to pull all Mines of Moria starter sets, and several other items from shelves...
As we know, this only happens when new sets are due soon... Soo.. speculations as to whats comming... or if anyone cares, can start now. Chances are White Dwarf leak will be seen before December...
Edit: And now for some more solid details:
The LotR tabletop game will be renamed "The Hobbit". War of the Rings stays the same (for now). This is to emphasize on the difference inbetween the two systems. I've heard rumours of a "Battle of the five armies" supplement for War of the Ring, but I would not expect this anytime sooner then the 3rd movie. Probably more an educated guess then a rumour.
The one product for the Hobbit in december (as far as I know we really only get one) is a boxed game in the lines of Dark Vengence and Island of Blood. It contains more miniatures then Dark Vengance. No definite info on the contents, but 13 dwarves, a hobbit and a wizard should be a safe bet. No words on the opponents. I'm guessing goblins and wargs, with something big the dwarves can steamroll.
The box is supposed to contain scenery.
The box also comes with a brand new rule book. It's a complete new set of rules, though they are probably based on the current rules. Though I am very excited about this, hold your horses. It's still just rumours.
For the time being, the only way to obtain the book ist the boxed set. No hardcover, allthough I'd expect that to change in the future.
Now the downside is the price is located somewhere around 100€. That would roughly put it in the same category as the current Space Marine battalion (check your regional website for price comparison)
There were hints on a limited edition of the boxed set. Worked pretty well for Dark Vengance.