If I asked you to think of a card that may double its price in a week, you probably would never think Nether Shadow. To be fair, though, Nether Shadow is a pretty good card, and it hasn’t been printed since Fifth Edition. Why the sudden jump then? With Legacy coming a lot more prevalent in recent months, demand has increased for many older cards. It is a card that is played in some Legacy Dredge lists as a four-of. However, just how good is it really?
Pictured above is the Fourth Edition version. It was also printed in Alpha, Beta, Unlimited, and Revised. The Fifth edition has different art and has a bit more clear wording:
Nether Shadow is very much like Bloodghast, actually, but he always has Haste, which Bloodghast doesn’t have until an opponent is at 10 life or less. However, it has a very different condition for being able to come back. Bloodghast comes back from the graveyard whenever you drop a land. Nether Shadow can come back as long as three or more creature cards exist above it in the graveyard. Not many cards worry about the order of graveyards, but this is definitely one. In a Dredge deck, however, this condition is going to happen often. He’s typically run instead of Bloodghast in that deck, as it is a far less expensive option.
Is Nether Shadow a good investment? It’s highly unlikely to be reprinted, mainly because of the strangeness of its graveyard-order based mechanics. There is still a decent supply of them out there, so the price probably won’t skyrocket a ton. Still, there are probably plenty sitting around in bulk binders, so if they can be had for around $1 a copy (where it sat for years) it’s not a bad idea to stash a few away.
– Elspeth for the Win