Kasparov, who was playing whites, agreed on Tuesday to a draw after 37 moves.  The 40-year-old Russian-American will play three more games against "X3D Fritz" at the New York Athletic Club, but he is resigned to the fact that soon chess grandmasters will stand no chance against computers.

Kasparov played wearing three-D glasses, gazing at a chess board that appears to float in the air. He dictated piece movements with voice commands and rotated the board with a joystick. 

The International Computer Games Association and the United
States Chess Federation, which will be holding the next games on 13,16 and 18 November say it is the first time a chess challenge has been fought "in total virtual reality."

Kasparov is considered the world's best chess player, even
though he lost the world champion title to Vladimir Kramnik in 2000.

Man versus machine

This is his third series against a computer. He lost to Deep Blue in 1997 and tied with Deep Junior in February.

"Five years from now, it will be impossible to beat a machine in long matches"

Gary Kasparov, world's best chess player 

"X3D Fritz" is an upgraded version of "Fritz," the machine which took on Kramnik in Bahrain in 2002, tying him four to four.

"Five years from now, it will be impossible to beat a machine in long matches," Kasparov predicted in a press conference in advance of the series.

"But all this makes it more exciting. Each time we have to be
more creative, each time I have to spend more time analysing the machine's performance, the software engines that are delivered to us," he said.

Kasparov went on "It is now man versus machine, with no one in between, no one moving the pieces for it. It is the purest form of this vicious struggle."There is a man and a machine and the machine is invisible and I'm not fooled by an operator who is pretending to be my opponent but really is just the messenger of the machine."

The games are being shown live on the internet at
www.x3dchess.com.