The analogy is simple. Your motherboard does not make your computer faster. It supports the engines that drive the system.
3) Memory quantity sufficient to prevent disk swapping
Typically you will get a new motherboard when you upgrade some/all of the above because THEY won't fit in the one you now have.
Okay, the most important thing to know in this order:
1) Is it a computer bought from a store
2) If so, what brand and model number
3) If not, what CPU does it run, and at the very least what is the make
4) The approx. age
BTW, your friend isn't really helping that much - pretty much all that data is irrelevant, and getting a new 'board isn't going to do the miracles that you expect it to. Plus you'll have to reinstall Windows...big hassle.
Newf is right as far as that list goes, but I'd swap GPU and RAM round - RAM helps more stuff than GPU.