The other week I was running through Ironforge and saw a dwarf on a gothic-looking horse. On closer inspection the horse turned out to be a Baron - Deathcharger. That is, the one that falls from Baron Rivendare, one of the final bosses in Stratholme (a level 5ppl 60 donjon from vanilla WoW). It used to be that you went there in a group and had a 0.02% chance of falling out.
Now Strath is passed solo and after Patch 3.0.2 the probability of falling out a horse is 1%. Asked the dwarf how many times he went to the Strat to knock out a horse. He said 29 (twenty-nine). There you go. Twenty-nine times to go through the instance. In principle, on the 80th to farm this horse you can just run up to the slaughterhouse, along the way putting three bosses in ziggurats and bypassing the packs of Thresh. It won't take long, about 10-15 minutes, but at 1% chance you'll have to spend... you do the math.
Grinding and farming for some "valuable" item is one of the basics of WoW. Or rather, one of the mechanisms that motivates players to spend a lot of time in the game. Take the ranged armor sets, such as Tier 2(Dragonstalker Armor for hunters). Most of the pieces fell off the bosses in Black Wing Lair, including Nefarion. The other two pieces were helmet from Onyxia, and pants from Ragnaros in Onyxia Lair and Molten Core. All of the raid instances were designed for forty people, there might have been a few more hunters in the raid besides you. And it's not certain that the right piece of the set would fall out of the boss on that run. Plus, to get to Ragnaros, let alone Nefarion (and to take them down), you had to know exactly what to do and how to do it, and have a well-played team. It took people months (!!!) to get that coveted teddy. Sounds to me like too cruel a way to keep people in the game. I think that this mechanic was not the least of the reasons that provoked the nerd addiction to the game.
Yes, it's easier now, the badges-billets, but still how many times to go through the same Nax, to get a full set of T7? I don't know, now started looking into an upgrade to start raiding, we'll see how things go. That's what a couple of things from T7 I will, so that's for sure, but the prospect of many months farming the same donjon pleases little.
By the way, go once a week in fan-raids with co-guildmates, collected myself three pieces of set Dragonstalker Armor, so to speak, for the collection. Ran into BWL on Friday. What can I say, even for fifteen blue-green 70-80s this donjon is no picnic area. On Ebonrock, we wiped out three times before one full-T7 paladin was called. Lying there waiting for the res, I thought about how this whole thing went down in the WoW 1.xx era. It was hard, I think, the life of a 60-man in those days.
P.S. I repent, got hooked on it myself. In principle, the elven saber-toothed I was not particularly needed, because the gain in speed does not give, but that's what I wanted and that's it. On the other hand - now I don't see any special perks that I'd really like to pull on myself.