Moving to Sponge, just a few questions not seen

I’ve been away from the MC community for a good part of a year. So I’ve been fairly well out of the loop of things.
I’ve been aware of CB/Spigot/Sponge status, but not so much in changes in the last 9 months.

I’ve decided to bring back my MC servers, and since I plan to start fresh, start with Sponge for less headaches down the road. I have really liked using Spigot, and with no idea how much longer Spigot will be staying around, and being called “Illegal” in many locations on the web. The illegal part doesn’t scare me so much, but its popularity shifting to Sponge which supports more areas of the MC server modding than CB or Spigot has.

I’ve looked around the Docs and found some answers, but one I’m wondering about is support for bukkit/spigot plugins.

Could I get some suggestions for plugin replacements that I have not seen ports of yet?
Essentials, which includes Group Manager has stopped being supported it seems. No updates since 2014.
Do I need to worry about Vault? Does Sponge cover the same permission and such issues that Vault has fixed?
Land Management. I personally liked Towny, but I haven’t noticed anything about Towny on here as of yet. I know the Devs are helping with Sponge last I knew.
Used to use ChestShop and Gringotts. Anything similar?
I’ve got many other plugins I/we have used, but those are the main concerns at this time.

I know this may be simple things that I could look up, which I have. But it seems to be quite a lot to take in at once to switch over and relearning what can and can’t be done and finding what’s available again. Just need some assistance and opinions. The plugin listing here is one long list, so I’m looking forward to ORE when it comes out, would make looking for categorized stuff much easier.

Essentials has quite a few replacements, a popular one being Nucleus

Permissions wise, again there are a few options, but PermissionsEx is again a popular choice

Vault isn’t needed - Sponge has an Economy API built right in, and Permissions make far more sense too.

There’s a few options for land protection depending on what you want to do:

Theres a handful of chest shop plugins on the forums, as is the same for economy plugins.

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Ore is out -

Aye, Ore is open, but it’s not “official” yet, pending some more stress testing. There will be announcement very soon, hopefully, as soon as things stabilise.