Deck Tech: Illusionary Amulet with Justin Pierce
If you know your history, you'll remember that Illusions first made an appearance on the big time as a mono-blue contraption, with lists packing plenty of different allies—and some even running Grand Architect. In Memphis, Justin Pierce took it to the next level by chucking in an artifact fatty engine, bolstered by Quicksilver Amulet.
Capable of playing an aggressive quick game with Phantasmal Bear, Lord of the Unreal, and Phantasmal Image, Justin's tricks don't stop there. If you've got the ground covered, whether it's through blockers or other defensive measures, he can turn those creatures into mana sources with Grand Architect, jamming down a major threat.
Treasure Mage is a bit of glue for all the whole thing, allowing Justin to run a major mixture of creatures. Wurmcoil Engine provides the obvious resilient threat with bonus lifelink, but he has some more interesting options as well. Fearing Vapor Snag? Myr Battlesphere should do nicely. Up against burn spells? Give Platinum Empirion a try. Stalled offensively? Either Thopter Assembly or Blightsteel Colossus should clear things up quickly.
In addition to the artifacts, Justin has added everyone's famous seven-drop to the mix: Elesh Norn, Grand Cenobite. The format's major creature trump, Elesh Norn dominates certain strategies and even gives you an out to flooding by providing you something to do with all that mana. That has to be one of this deck's best aspects—with Treasure Mage and Amulet bridging the gap, the deck has plans whether it's got a lot of lands or not, with the little guys providing game early.
Justin's maindeck is missing a lot of interactivity—in fact, he's just dropping creatures and using Mana Leak to fend off the opponent, for the most part. The sideboard solves those issues with a bevy of removal and counterspells, setting Justin up to take control of the game however he pleases. One card that's strangely missing is Moorland Haunt. The land's ability to finish games later or defend for a turn or so makes it a staple in most U/W decks, but it's conspicuously absent from this one. Just one seems like a reasonable value.
If you're interested in a few flavor of U/W—and in cutting Delver of Secrets from the archetype entirely—then you might be interested in brewing with Justin's list. Take a look: