Power armour, armoured suits or 'Suits' as they are often known, are a common weapon on the surface of Eden favoured by both Russia and the Alliance. Since the end of open war between the colonial powers and the withdrawal of the Alliance, the powerful weapons are often employed by the various provinces within their own militias.
A suit is an armoured 'vehicle' which encases the human operator, using powerful motors to enhance his movements and multiply his strength. It is essentially a mobile heavy weapons platform, able to move through the dense forests of Eden with weapons far larger than anything carried by a traditional rifle platoon. Since wheeled and tracked vehicles are almost incapable of operating within the forests, the suit comes into its own in this environment, providing massive firepower that would otherwise be left behind.
The suit does come with many disadvantages however. It is far larger than the soldiers it supports, making it easy pickings for smart missiles. It is also easier to detect and track, and at close ranges its armour can still be defeated by regular magnetic weapons. The heavy weapons carried by the suit make it far more effective at greater ranges, but within the forest combat is often conducted at very close range, so the advantage is lost. In the open ground, a suit become extremely vulnerable to smart missiles due to its relatively low speeds and large profile, and snipers are known to aim for the knee joints, knowing that when a suit topples it can easily maim its own operator.
Weapons like the suit are known as 'prestige weapons', used to scare, intimidate, and overwhelm the enmey or local population. Tactically they are severely flawed, especially when faced with modern weapons that can easily penetrate their armour. For this reason the Union rarely uses the suit, and it is a weapon more commonly seen within the militias.