"We've listened to our players and today we are delivering against their most direct feedback with the release of the new Single-Player Mode,” Maxis' Patrick Buechner said. According to Maxis, the offline mode now requires calculations to be done locally on a player's computer. "gains in optimization to the GlassBox Engine" enabled this to be possible.
The original online mode will be called "Multiplayer Mode," which will offer leaderboards, achievements, dynamic pricing of resources, and cloud saves--features not available in the offline mode. However, Single-Player will let players control when and how their progress is saved.
Here's a look at how to play the new offline mode: