The Anti-Life Equation allows one who knows it to subjugate the souls of all beings in the universe. No being is immune to the effects. For this reason, acquiring the equation is the utmost goal of Darkseid, Lord of Apokolips. In his many studies along the cosmos the evil new god came across an old Martian Sanskrit detailing the existence of a Life Equation, one detailing individual fee will and sentience in the universe.
Darksied suddenly came to the realization that if a life equation is a thing then the very opposite must also be true, that there must by an Anti-Life Equation. Very little has been confirmed of the Anti-Life equation. What is known is that a key part of the equation is held within the subconsciousness of the human mind.
It is believed that any tool used to control another person, such as fear, torture, pain and lies are parts of the Anti-Life Equation.Very few have knowledge of the full equation, but notably Scott Free Mr. Miracle has been found to know it, but has the willpower not to use it.In issue #3 of Red Robin, Tim Drake told Cassie Sandsmark (the second Wonder Girl) that he was in Gotham during the Crisis and heard the Anti-Life Equation. He then tells her:
"But you know what? Before the equation took hold, I remember thinking...
...I remember thinking that there wasn't much of it I disagreed with."
The equation itself is:
loneliness + alienation + fear + despair + self-worth ÷ mockery ÷ condemnation ÷ misunderstanding × guilt × shame × failure × judgmentn = y, y = hope, n = folly, love = lies, life = death, self = dark side
It has been hinted that Mr Mxyzptlk might have to do something with the Anti-Life Equation.
After obliterating Darkseid and Apokolips in World's Funnest, Mr Mxyzptlk handed Darkseid a piece of paper which says Mr. Mxyzptlk plus Bat-Mite equals Anti-life.
In Emperor Joker when Joker gained 99% of Mr. Mxyzptlk's power, Darkseid discussed the matter with the Quintessence claiming that "An insignificant spec on the planet Earth has stumbled onto something which is, by right, mine. I refer to of course The Anti-Life Equation."
Darkseid finally discovers the complete Anti-Life Equation and launches an invasion of Earth in order to use it to enslave the human race. Using Mad Hatter technology, Darkseid creates helmets that play the Anti-Life Equation on an infinite loop in the wearer's ears, effectively making them his mindless slaves, his Justifiers. If the helmets are removed he will lose control over them.
The functions of the equation remain much the same as they did in old continuity with quite a few alterations, it has come into the hands of multiple users. Chief among them was Yuga Khan last of the Old Gods of the world before the fourth world, had it in his possession before his untimely death at the hands of his sons; chiefly speaking Uxas.
Some eons later the nihilism inducing formula was used by Darksied in his invasion of Earth 2, drawing a host of human denizens unfortunate enough to hear it towards the Apokoliptian processor factories. Over time however he either cast it aside or the equation was lost again, bumping around throughout the multiverse and into the hands of countless individuals who do and don't know what they have.
Only a few individuals possess the full equation and utilize it for a host of useful attributes either not seen or underutilized in previous incarnations. Such as resurrecting the dead fully, enslaving the effected to ones being or quite possible shifting ones moral axis after revitalization; Currently it is in the hands of the Anti-Monitor.
Cursed to host it's power after discovering the secret of the Earth-3 universe. Whom eventually shed his destructive persona when he expunged it after killing Darkseid, the complete equation going to Grail upon it's release.