I was talking to a couple of opponauts earlier and telling them they should get PCs instead of another console. Like a lot of people with roots in console gaming they seemed hesitant, primarily over cost. Now this is not one hundred percent car related but I think a lot of people who play racing games on Oppo might not other wise be exposed to this information.
Commence the Learnings
First you need to pick out a CPU. I recommend basically the cheapest thing of the current intel generation because this will leave you room to upgrade later when you have more money and will do pretty good by you right now. Something you can't do with a console.
Intel Celeron G1820 2.7 GHz Haswell: $45.99 Total: $45.99
Next pick out a motherboard. For this build I am being very frugal. Typically I advise spending a little more money on your motherboard because it is the chassis you will build around and determines how long you can keep upgrading before you basically have to replace the whole computer. For this build this basic no frills Asus board will get the job done.
Asus H81M-K: $52.99 Total:$98.98
Then select some Ram. Honestly nobody really needs more than 4 GB typically but it's so cheap and especially with only two slots I'd recommend buying more because if you want to upgrade in the future you basically have to toss your ram. With this build though I am being an outright cheapskate so 4 GB will do.
Corsair XMS3 4GB 2x2GB DDR3 1600: $52.99 Total: $151.97
Then select your hard drive. I am in love with solid state drives and will never go back. You on the other hand can live with a WD Blue 1TB 7200 RPM drive because it's cheap.
WD Blue 7200 RPM 1TB HDD: $59.99 Total: $211.96
Then select a case and power supply. Again I would recommend something nicer, especially in the power supply department as those cheaper ones can fail often. In the interest of frugality we will chance it on this cheap one and if it blows you just buy a nicer one with a better warranty.
No name case and PSU:$44.99 Total:$256.95
Now stop right here! If you want the absolute cheapest PC you can build we're pretty much there. We could've spent a bit more on a processor with better graphics integrated but really nobody wants that on a desktop. Now if you can spend a little more you will have a computer that will rival a PS4 and Xbox One and is fully capable of stomping them down the road when you have more money for upgrades.
The Graphics card. The part that makes or breaks a gaming PC. Now a lot of people will go crazy and spend a ton of money on this part and ignore the rest of there build. Do not do that. The graphics card I am recommending is perfectly capable of good gaming and there is no reason to upgrade beyond it without spending more on other things like cooling, power supplies, an SSD, a better case, a faster CPU, etc. etc.
For this build I am recommending the AMD R7 260X. It can run Battlefield 4 at 60 fps and I usually reference this game because it is one of the most challenging games to a graphics card short of ones that basically try to break your graphics card as well not typically caring what processor you have installed so it gives you a good idea how good your graphics card is.
XFX R7 260X: $109.99-$20 rebate: $89.99 Total: $346.94
So there you have it. A PC that will run Battlefield 4 at a minimum frame rate of 68 fps at 1080p for $346.94. That is a higher resolution and minimum frame rate than either of the next gen consoles will hit all for $50 less. I did leave off some odds and ends like a keyboard and mouse and I didn't add a display because if you want you can just use your tv. The biggest thing I left off is an Operating System or OS for short. You can install Linux or Steam for free but for less tech savvy people who want to play every game now you're going to want Windows. One reason I didn't include it is pricing can vary. You might pay full price of $100, you might trust some random store on a google search selling it for $65, or you might luck out like I did and be in a college that participates with a Microsoft program like Dreamspark that lets you install the current version of Windows for free.
If you all liked this and would like to see other builds with more power or different brands let me know in the comments. If you hated it and want to chase me out of your romanian village with Trabants that fire pitchforks and shoot fire let me know and include pictures, otherwise I'll just assume you're lying gypsies with Ladas.