Klei has announced that there won't be Don't Starve: Newhome offline mode or controller support at launch. That said, there's the possibility that these features can come at a later date.
Don't Starve: Newhome is the next upcoming game from Klei Entertainment. Klei created its flagship Don't Starve franchise a fair few years ago and has since released a number of DLC add-ons and a multiplayer version called Don't Starve Together. Now, a new mobile game is on the way; unfortunately, you're going to need an Internet connection or mobile data to play it.
Why is There No Don't Starve: Newhome Offline Mode or Controller Support?
The lack of Don't Starve: Newhome offline mode and controller support might be upsetting to some players, but Klei Entertainment took the time to explain its reasoning for not having these features available at launch.
"We have also noticed that there are two topics that everyone is very concerned about," a developer stated in a video on Twitter. "The first topic is offline mode. At present, we don't have plans for an offline mode. We know that everyone wants to experience Don't Starve: Newhome anytime and anywhere, but some of you are worried that the network signal is not great in all places at all times. Don't worry, we have specially optimized for weak network environments."
The video goes on to explain that "game security issues" are a concern and that this is designed as an online game first and foremost, so it looks very unlikely that an offline mode will be available anytime soon.
As for controller support, that missing feature likely comes down to development resources. Developers have to choose between developing a robust set of features or releasing as soon as possible and it looks like Klei Entertainment is aiming for the latter in this case. It might seem somewhat strange, but I suspect that controller use for mobile games probably isn't all that popular yet — remember, game streaming services that would be better with a controller (such as Project xCloud and Google Stadia) are still relatively new in the grand scheme of things.
On the upside, Klei Entertainment has said that it has no problem with players using emulators to play their game. A Don't Starve: Newhome offline mode seems unlikely to launch anytime soon, although there's always the possibility that they could change their mind. As for controller support, I wouldn't be surprised to see this feature fleshed out at a later date if the game does well enough. For now, a lucky few players are enjoying the closed beta; you can learn more about this game on the Don't Starve: Newhome website.