In 1996, Melson met Richard Hatch at a Sci Fi Convention in San Francisco. Hatch saw Eric in his re-envisioned Cylon Centurion Robot Costume for the first time and was impressed with the authenticity of the Centurion and happy to see that while the design was different, it was very close to the original. The Melson Design appeared to be a logical step into the future of what the Centurion may have become over time. Richard Hatch pitched the idea of becoming part of the project and Eric Melson accepted.
RoboCop was a huge influence on the costume design, along with ABC ROBOT from Judge Dredd and the "Guyver". There were other influences that helped perfect the Melson Design to appear more Robotic and not to look too much like a Guy in a Suit. Children were one of the biggest critics to Eric and inadvertently by their curiousity helped Eric improve his design to appear very realistic. Children were always looking for the "Man in the Machine" until the Design was modified enough to give no traces of flesh or fabric of any kind.