Dystopias are everywhere in 2013. Gamers have been wowed by the epically dysfunctional worlds of the Bioshock series and The Last of Us, and novels like The Hunger Games and Divergent rule the shelves. Meanwhile on the big screen, Elysium, After Earth, and Oblivion were just a few of the dystopian films released this summer alone, while The Walking Dead has risen from the dead for its fourth season this fall.
But as you'll learn in this slideshow, the 21st Century is far from the only period to be totally obsessed with Doomsday. Humans have always wondered if our species would go out with a bang, a whimper, or something else entirely. So join us for a tour of some of the most amazing visions of the apocalypse in history, and some of the most brain-bustingly imaginative artists working today (like this arresting piece we used for our cover: "Dystopia" by Berthjan).