Although the game is free to play and almost all features are available to non-spenders, spending money will fast track the growth of your account and will give you a competitive advantage over non spenders.
A full list of available packs can be accessed via the Plus button next to your Gold amount.
There are two 1st Time Buyer Packs, one for a discounted price of 1 USD (normal price 30 USD) and another for 5 USD (normal price 140 USD).
The smaller one contains 10 Master Axes, and for the rest a little bit of some very common items like Lord and Dragon EXP, Assault and Guardian Power, Food and Wood, Farm and Sawmill Boost, Knucklebones and Speedup.
The larger one contains 100 Master Axes and mostly just more of the same items as the small pack. Besides that it contains 25 of each of the most common materials.
There are other packs, some temporary offers (e.g. New Year Package), some focussed on specific game play (e.g. Dragon Power Pack or Resource Bundle).
Besides that there are also packs that just contain gold.
As an alternative for purchasing a one time pack, you can also go for a Daily Delivery by a subcription for 7, 15 or 30 days. The daily delivery is 600 gold plus a goody bag with 6 Master Axes, 500 Dragon EXP, 500 Lord EXP, 10 VIP Points, 5m Speedups and a Knucklebone.
It is not easy to compare various packs and it is also not possible to look forward to what will be available in the future. My suggestion is to see what you want to achieve and see which of the packs best fits your needs.
I had two goals for my first pack: I wanted to unlock the 1 Day deposit scheme for the Vault (any pack will do for that), and I wanted to get enough Master Axes to be able to unlock the next Advanced Rural Plot (so I wanted a pack with Master Axes).
I did not want to go for a daily subscription model, as I would prefer not to get used to getting something I had to pay real money for each day.
For the reasons mentioned I selected the larger of the two 1st Time Buyer Packs for 5 USD.
A lot of things available in packs can be acquired in other ways, some very easy. However for certain things you need to purchase packs. As mentioned above the 1 Day Vault Deposit can only be unlocked via purchasing a pack. I am currently unaware of any other items or features that can only be acquired via packs. If anyone else knows, please add it in the comments.
There are several items that are hard to come by outside of buying packs. These are the Master Axes (to open up more Rural Plots), the various level Intensity Crystals, and to a lesser extend materials and gold.
I mentioned about extra Rural Plots and Master Axes a few times. Be aware that 100 hundred Master Axes is only going to unlock one extra Rural Plot for you (unlike the extra sections you can open when your castle reaches certain levels, which contain a fair number of plots), and to open subsequent rural plots you need an increasing amount of Master Axes. The second Rural Plot costs 500 Master Axes. I have not yet unlocked that one, so do not know the requirements for the 3rd.
Consider first if playing smarter can get you what you want. If you for example complete the Daily Rewards, win the Gold Events, join Barbarian rallies, donate some portal dust, slay Monsters whenever you can, gather resources, you will already get a lot of stuff.
Make spending money count. Make sure you get useful items or unlock useful features that you cannot (easily) get without spending.