I can't wait for Surviving Mars (opens in new tab), the colony builder from the makers of Tropico, but it's worth remembering a couple of other red planet games that are coming out this year. Occupy Mars (opens in new tab), another colony builder, is one, and now there's also Memories of Mars, a multiplayer open-world survival game releasing in Early Access this Spring.
Humans that were trying to colonise Mars have abandoned their posts, and you're a human clone waking up to the chaos. Solar flares mean you don't last very long out in the open, so you have to gather resources and craft a base in first-person while fighting off hunger and blasting away any NPCs that want to kill you. You'll explore 85 points of interest on the 16km2 map—for comparison, Skyrim's map is around 40km2.
It all happens in multiplayer servers in which other players can be both enemies and allies. You'll inevitably end up in one-on-one duels, although if you band together with another player you'll be able to gather resources more efficiently and build a more elaborate base. I'm imagining a redder ARK: Survival Evolved (opens in new tab), where you can try and go it alone but you have more fun with friends.
'Flops' are the name of the key resource in the game, and you'll want to collect as many of them as possible while keeping your stash safe from other players. There are lots of ways to obtain them, developer Limbic Entertainment says, including "in-game events where players will converge and try to survive".
The Early Access version will be fully functional, but won't contain all the areas, items and enemies of the final game. It's being published by 505 Games, who also published Rocket League, Terraria, and Abzû.