Yes need to have Analytics enabled for the personalization rules to be enabled in the system, but you can effectively disable it by turning off the database writes.
You need to set
Analytics.Enabled to true and
Analytics.DisableDatabase to true. Example patch file:
<setting name="Analytics.Enabled" value="true">
With these settings, you enable the personalization rules in the presentation component, but you do not need the analytics database and no writes are attempted by Sitecore.