It goes without saying that the power suits were essential to the original Heinlein novel. From what I’ve heard, the first movie did not have the power suits due to a “creative decision” made at the time. Later on, Ed decided to have the Marauder suits appear in the third movie as an homage to the novel.
For our movie, we definitely wanted to have fun with the power suits since we have the master of mechanical and robotic designs, Mr Shinji Aramaki as our director. Mr Aramaki has designed a lot of “mecha” (that’s what we call it in Japanese) for various movies. Incidentally, his first inspiration and motivation to start his career was actually the illustration on the Japanese version of the novel. As Mr Aramaki was already a diehard fan of Starship Troopers before this project, we turned over the keys and gave him full freedom to approach the design process as both a filmmaker and a fan. We couldn’t be happier with the result. He worked together with another designer bearing the same first name, Mr Shinji Usui (also known for mecha designs, but in the game space). They essentially came up with 3 different power suits: The inner suit to support all muscles, the main power suit, and the new Marauder Mk II.
Here are some of the initial conceptual designs.
The inner suit conceptual design…
Here is the conceptual design for the female version. It’s slimmer but not too much in order to preserve the integrity/authenticity we feel best fits the Starship Troopers universe.
Starship Troopers: Invasion. Power suits designed by Shinji Aramaki (Appleseed) and Shinji Usui (Metal Wolf Chaos, Chromehounds). The two created designs for three different kinds of suits to appear in the title.
Info from Starship Troopers Invasion website