I agree with other posters to avoid buying a set, especially if price is a concern. Many sets will have lots of knives you will rarely use and the quality will be mediocre. You can get most cutting tasks done with a chef knife and paring knife. Even cutting soft bread and slicing meat can be done with a chef knife. If you eat a lot of crusty bread then add a serrated bread knife. If you cook a lot of roasts, a slicing knife will be lighter and thinner with a tip that is better shaped for stabbing and moving slices. But for starters, the 2 knives I first mentioned will go a long way.
Japanese knives are a joy to use. I have three. They are made from harder steel, that can be made thinner and ground to a more acute edge. This makes them lighter, and better at slicing and chopping with less force needed, and less tendency to wedge into food. They stay sharp longer. They are hard enough that you don't need to run a steel over them before use. They are less rugged, not suitable for hacking through bones, splitting frozen meat or using as a can opener (gasp). And yes, some traditional European makers are now producing blades that are harder and thinner than typical German knives, so you really need to read the specs.
Victorinox knives are great value, rugged and easy to sharpen for a great price. They are available in fibrox (plasticky) and rosewood handles. To kick it up a notch, look at entry level Japanese knives from suppliers like https://japanesechefsknife.com/
. Brands like Fujiwara FKM and Tojiro DP are great entry level brands at reasonable prices, and MAC at a higher price and quality level.
For my own knives I have three Japanese Hattori FH knives from Japanese Chefs Knife (240 mm gyuto, 150 mm petty and 65 mm paring). They are amazingly light and sharp with beautiful quality and finishing. For lesser used knives I have rosewood handled Victorinox bread knife and boning knife. And a cheap Chinese carving knife and fork with sentimental value since my mom gave them to me when I was at university. And I have some cheap German style knives I bring out when guests are cooking, since they have an awful tendency to cut on china plates and use them for can openers.
Always remember the number one rule when using a knife: finish with the same number of fingers you started with.