Even though the game came out in 2007, people still go all "boo hoo" over Crysis' graphics settings. Say they're prohibitive, use them as a benchmark. Well, you can murder those settings for $500.
At least, you can according to Maximum PC, who cobbled together the following rig for $509 (a bit over, we know, but close enough):
Motherboard: MSI P43 Neo3-F LGA 775
CPU: Intel Pentium E5200
Videocard: Powercolor AX4870 512MB
RAM: Crucial 2GB DDR2/800
Hard Drive: Western Digital Caviar SE WD3200AAJS
Optical Drive: Samsung SH-S223F
Case + Power Supply: Rosewill TU-155 II 500 Black
This system can not only play Crysis, but can - according to MPC's testing - play it at 1900x1200 at 36 frames per second on "high" settings (they couldn't try out anything higher, since the cheap rig had XP, which doesn't natively support Crysis' fancy DX10 graphic options)
If you're looking for an all-new PC, it's a little misleading, as it's leaving out the cost of stuff like a monitor, but if you're just after an upgrade, this shows that even in these dark economic times you can scrounge together an impressive gaming rig on the cheap.