I was recently commissioned to make a banner for a Christian summer camp starting in June.
I did all of this in blender, but in 4 separate files that were composited together in photoshop at the end. I used cycles for all the rendering.
The model of the guy inside the ship was taken from http://www.blendswap.com/blends/characters/the-judge/
A little backstory - the idea of a ship dropping pods with soldiers came from robert heinlin(?)'s great novel called starship troopers. Great read for anyone into sci-fi.