Tuesday Night Takeover

Laboratory Maniac Self-Mill Pauper EDH

“Doctor doctor-this is how we doctor!”

Art:Laboratory Maniac by Jason Felix

Lab Man is a famed combo win condition in many decks in a ton of different formats and even in Pauper EDH. We certainly are doing it less flashy than other formats but with the help of Persistent Petitioners, we are quite the strong deck focusing on control elements and self-milling ourselves, and getting a huge lab man win. This deck is interesting and very different than really any of the Pauper EDH decks I have featured on the site up to this point, but I have been having an absolute blast with this, and while it is a “cheaty” deck that doesn’t follow the typical conventions of magic, it still feels decently fair. Without further adieu, let’s get it!

The Deck:

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Laboratory Maniac Self-Mill!

Commander (1)
Laboratory Maniac

Creatures (34)
Drowner Initiate
30 Persistent Petitioners
Sage’s Row Denizen
Meldweb Curator
Mnemonic Wall

Instants (16)
Arcane Denial
Dive Down
Essence Scatter
Logic Knot
Lose Focus
Mana Leak
Turn Aside

Sorceries (7)
Deep Analysis
Distant Melody
Lórien Revealed
Sleep of the Dead
Treasure Cruise

Artifacts (2)
Arcane Signet
Sky Diamond

Enchantments (5)
Robe of Mirrors
Alexi’s Cloak
Chronic Flooding
Diplomatic Immunity
Jace’s Erasure
Lands (35)
Desert of the Mindful
Hidden Cataract
28 Island
Lonely Sandbar
Mystic Sanctuary
Path of Ancestry
Remote Isle
The Surgical Bay

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Why Laboratory Maniac?

Lab Man is a huge portion of our deck, and we don’t typically cast until the end of the game, but we always make sure we have protection for it. Whether it be through our enchantments like Alexi's Cloak and Diplomatic Immunity or through some of our counterspells like Counterspell or Mana Leak we have quite a few ways to keep our commander on the field when we get them out and are ready for a win.

Deck Overview:

This section contains information about cards in the deck and how they function within the deck! I also highlighted some of my favorite cards in the deck!


We have thirty Persistent Petitioners, which are the primary win condition for our deck and a card we group up as much as possible so we can self-mill ourselves out and get that sweet, sweet Lab Man win. We actually do have some pretty cool creatures in our creature package, like Sage's Row Denizen and Drowner Initiate which are great additional ways for us to mill ourselves when cast our Petitioners which is a great way to keep on milling and further the attempt at a Lab Man Win. Mnemonic Wall and Meldweb Curator are both great ways to recur instants and sorceries and since we mill an absolute ton we really have a ton of choices, what we recur is certainly situation dependent but having that option is great.


Counters, Counters and more Counters: Our Instant package focuses on protecting us when we go for a Lab Man win and stopping our opponents if they try to stop us or start getting out of hand. We have a ton of cheap counterspells like Mana Leak, Arcane Denial, and Dispel are great ways to protect ourselves from single-target removal and stop our opponents if they start doing shenanigans within their deck. When we have a packed-up graveyard there is almost nothing that we can’t counter with Logic Knot. We are very heavy on instants not only to protect ourselves but to stop our opponents as well; we have a ton of different ways to further the ultimate gameplan of winning through Lab Man.


A large majority of the draw spells within our deck reside in the sorcery package and allow us to get a quick and easy Lab Man win once we empty out our library. Ponder and Preordain are great ways to draw some extra cards in the early game and, if we have an empty library, a quick and cheap way to win the game. Deep Analysis is one of my favorite cards in the deck because even if we mill it and have no draws in hand we can use it to get a Lab Man win. Since we have a ton of milled cards in the graveyard we can get a ton of value out of Treasure Cruise and often Ancestral Recall with it because milling seven cards is next to nothing for this deck. Distant Melody is a little different. While it is not a mill spell, it is a draw spell, and since we have thirty creatures that share a creature type, we can often draw an absolute ton of cards off of it.


We only have two artifacts in the deck, and they both serve the exact same purpose, which is to generate extra mana and allow us to get more and more Persistent Petitioners out as well as have additional mana to protect our creatures and commander.


Alexi's Cloak, Diplomatic Immunity, and Robe of Mirrors are arguably some of the most important cards in our deck since they allow us to protect Lab Man, if we start getting low we are going to want Lab Man out and they are a huge removal magnet for the deck because players new and old know exactly what is going on when they see a Lab Man coming. All of these are great cheap ways to protect our commander and allow us to go off with protection. Chronic Flooding and Jace's Erasure are two amazing cards for the deck that give us additional self-mill for doing very common tasks. We can target our opponents with these as needed, but we typically self-mill ourselves.

Land Base:

We have a pretty typical Pauper EDH landbase, complete with all of the supplemental card draw that you would expect. Though in this deck, supplemental card draw after we mill our deck till empty can be a great way to end the game through Lab Man. This deck certainly looks a lot different when it comes to our drawlands because, depending on the situation, it is often better to hold them in our hands and wait till our deck is empty. I also love Mystic Sanctuary because it allows us to recur strong instants and sorceries that we have milled, whether this be a counter or a draw spell, it can be a strong option to have, and since we are in mono-blue it is pretty much always active. I like this landbase a lot and fit it to fit the deck well and be quite strong.

Strengths of the Deck:

  • We don’t need to interact with our opponents that much to close out games.
  • Once we get a Persistent Petitioners board established, we can go off decently quickly.
  • If needed, we can also mill opponents to throw off their game plan.

Weaknesses of the Deck:

  • We are decently weak to commander hate; while we do have ways to protect them, we typically need to mulligan aggressively if we get a hand without protection.
  • We can be a little slow-going in the early game, and since we don’t typically block with thirty of the creatures in our deck, we can be pretty susceptible to damage throughout the game.
  • We are generally weak to creature hate, especially if it targets the board.

Deck Stats:

Sample Hands:

Main Win Conditions:

There are no infinite combos or loops within the deck. This is certainly new for me to say here on the site, but we normally never go to combat with this deck. We are a lab man-focused deck through and through thirty copies of Persistent Petitioners. We can mill ourselves out pretty easily, and we have quite a few sources of card draw that we can win with. We also have some ways to protect our lab man, like Alexi's Cloak, Diplomatic Immunity, and Robe of Mirrors, which are all great ways to protect our commander, in addition to that we have a ton of counterspells.


While this is certainly a completely different deck than I am used to building on the site, but hey, I’m here for it. This deck is a ton of fun to play, and while al little linear, it can be great for someone who likes weird style control decks with a ton of self-inflicted wounds within the deck. I hope you all enjoyed this weird and quirky list we brought to you here today. Thanks for reading to the end and for all of your support!