No, this isn't subversive...
Detailing Ubisoft's new DRM scheme for PC games last month, we'd been left with the impression from the official FAQ that should you be disconnected from Ubi.com in-game (required for play), you could resume offline. The company has now clarified this is not the case, so in short, yes, you will need a very much dedicated Internet connection to play most or all Ubisoft titles on the PC for the forseeable future.
"As long as you do not quit the game, the game will continue to try to reconnect for an unlimited time. Once the game is able to reconnect, you will immediately be returned to your game," an Ubisoft representative stated.
In addition to that, some titles will see you lose your progress should your connection drop mid-game, like Assassin's Creed II, which puts you back at the last checkpoint (yes, there are checkpoints) once you reconnect. Settlers 7 puts you back at the exact point you were at beforehand.
Granted, it's said this will only occur if the disconnection is "lengthy" -- a second or two won't cause any holdups. That and a slow connection is claimed to not make any trouble either. The rep said, "Our online services platform will require a maximum of 50kbps of available bandwidth, so even with the slowest connection, gameplay won’t be affected."
Given EA and BioWare have seen big success with a customer-friendly model on Dragon Age and Mass Effect 2 (essentially no DRM, but rather, redeemable DLC for legit owners), we have to say this is nothing but a headache. Even dreadful models like periodic online authentication seem like nothing in comparison.
Developers are opposing it, too; Tropico 3 studio Haemimont Games' Ivan-Assen Ivanov said, "I like what Ubisoft is doing for PC games - that way, we and everybody else will look reasonable when we do something slightly less retarded." That about sums it up.