So this past weekend I played over at an official GW store and again came across their very impressive LOTR selection. I know that in my area and it seems generically in the US in general, the interest in this game is minimal at best. There are a few people that might play it here and there but by in large it seems it is probably played among friends (maybe I'm wrong).

Having said that, the miniatures look really cool to paint and they deal with one of the best story lines I've read/watched since I was young.

So my question is generically, how does the game work? I play 40K and have a general understanding of WHFB as well as War Machine...

It seems that the game plays a skirmish style as well. I looked at the boxed set they have now (The Mines of Moria) and it seems that you simply re-enact the battle in Balin's Tomb. So after that, what happens? I guess a while back I understood the game could be played with different smaller scenarios and re-enactments or could be played more like the other games (40K, WHFB, etc) in that each side selects a force based on a total number of points and has at it.

If I were to get the Mines of Moria set, does that at all lead into the different army-style battles? Or would I be better off getting one of the source books (Free People, Armies of Men, Mordor, etc) and just growing my force from there? I guess I'm usually used to starter sets starting you with a fledgling army to grow but this isn't necessarily the case here.

or is it? Any help with this would be greatly appreciated!