I was bored and decided to see what a new gaming PC would cost that would be sufficient to play all the games I like (CS:GO, Dota 2, Starcraft2) on high/ultra settings at 60+ FPS while still getting a good enough CPU for getting work done too (CS major student), and holy shit! Not including the OS and peripherals, but including shipping, I could get a perfectly suitable build for $422! I mean damn that's cheap! Parts? Here you go:
FX-4300 CPU: $85
R9 270 GPU: $170 + 15% coupon = $145
EVGA 430W PSU: $35
2x4GB DDR4 1600MHz RAM: 2x$38 = $76
Xion XON-560 mATX Case: $40
ECS A960M-MV: $35
Look at the specs for $422! R9 270 is a great GPU, and the FX-4300 is a great CPU. Yeah it's not an i5, but it's almost as good (okay, 3/4ths as good) for less than half the price. Also if you really wanted, an FX-6300 is only a bit more expensive and a great CPU, although it wont help much with most games because it's got more cores instead of better cores. Also, yeah I know it's a cheap mobo, but reviews are still very good and with the latest BIOS update it supports all the hardware, and if you're super ballsy even overclocking. PCIE 2.0 x16 is still way fast enough to avoid a bottleneck here. Plus I'm not even skimping on the case or PSU, and did not factor in the $25 rebates which brings it to below $400! Cheaper than a console, yet completely smokes it in performance. If I were in the market for a new PC, I would be a happy man. Granted this relies on deals that end today, but you can always find good deals on parts. If not that specific GPU, then one of similar performance. Man gaming PCs have gotten cheap!
edit: Wow, forgot the HDD. That's another $50. Still cheaper than some consoles, but not quite sub-400 anymore. Oh well, still way worth it, and if you want to keep it ~$400 you can drop the ram down to 4GB.