Shippin' Out May 21-25: Pirates of the Caribbean, Halo 2 delayed

[UPDATE] The Master Chief's Vista debut is pushed to May 31 as Captain Jack Sparrow's multiplatform swashbuckler dominates the week's release slate.

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On Friday, Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End will descend on theaters. But while the film's box-office success is preordained--its predecessor grossed more than $135 million during its US opening weekend--the fate of its game adaptation is less secure. Though it is being released on every major platform, At World's End must overcome a checkered history. Previous games based on the Pirates films have received only middling reviews and so-so sales--check back later in the week to see if the latest installment passes muster with GameSpot's editors.

One game that sold very well when it was first released on the Xbox is Halo 2. Two and a half years later, the game was trying to be a best-seller again when it was supposed to arrive on the PC Tuesday. [UPDATE] However, on Thursday Microsoft abruptly announced the game had been pushed back to May 31. "We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused our customers," was the extent of Microsoft's mea culpa. Now Shadowrun, the somewhat controversial first-person shooter based on the classic role-playing game, will be the first title for Windows Live, the PC answer to Xbox Live, when it comes out May 29.

Fans of Japanese games also have a nice selection this week. Two distinctly Nippon-ese action role-playing games Square Enix's Dawn of Mana and Atlus' Odin Sphere--both touch down tomorrow alongside Naruto: Ninja Council 3 (DS) and WarTech: Senko no Ronde (Xbox 360).

It's also a good week for downloadable retro titles. Today, the classics Blazing Lazers, Donkey Kong 2: Diddy Kong's Quest, and Streets of Rage 2 all became available on the Wii's Virtual Console service. On Wednesday, the Cold War actioner Rush N' Attack and the seminal Shoot-'Em-Up Xevious will both debut on Xbox Live Arcade.

This week's new releases are listed below (list taken from retailer information--actual dates may vary).

MAY 21, 2007
Blazing Lazers (WII)
Donkey Kong 2: Diddy Kong's Quest (WII)
Streets of Rage 2 (WII)
UFO: Extraterrestrials (PC)

MAY 22, 2007
Brooktown High: Senior Year (PSP)
Death, Jr. and the Science Fair of Doom (DS)
Dawn of Mana (PS2)
Halo 2 (PC)
Legend of the Dragon (PSP)
Marvel Trading Card Game (DS)
Naruto: Ninja Council 3 (DS)
Odin Sphere (PS2)
Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End (X360, PC, WII, PS3, PS2, DS, PSP)
WarTech: Senko no Ronde (X360)

MAY 23, 2007
Diner Dash (DS, PSP)
Rush 'n Attack (X360)
Xevious (X360)

MAY 24, 2007
No releases scheduled.

MAY 25, 2007
No releases scheduled.

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