Thanks everyone for the replies.
Licho, are you seriously implying that you won't support the non-steam version after the steam version is released? If that is the case, you will show that you don't care about your existing user base and just abandon them.
As a new player, that is already not feeling good to me and you will lose players.
Please still keep supporting the non-steam portable version of the game.
As for the offline functionality, how is it that hard? If you aren't downloading new maps and don't want to join the forums, get news, all it takes is a try/catch or if statement around the code that goes online. Try connecting, if get exception, ignore it and continue. Doesn't the online code only happen at startup for updates and on the main screen for news etc, and once more on the new game screen? I mean for skirmish with AIs there should be no other online component.
If it wasn't coded with offline in mind, that's very disappointing to me. Please add support for this. I would really love this feature. Also LAN multiplayer should still work when there is no internet connection.
Please and thank you.