In the alternate history of 1946, after the Word War 1, an alien bomb was accidently set off above New York. This bomb rewrites the human DNA.
Aces are people who were infected with the virus but show no signs of abnormality. They look normal and in every aspect besides their power is normal. There are some Jokers who are considered aces. Such as Peregrine who has wings on her back but still is an attractive woman, and has her own TV show. Aces abilities are those that are considered fantastic or having superpowers. Such powers include as flying, teleporting, telepathy, shapeshifting, super strength reality warping etc.
Deuces are a separate group than Aces. They are basically Aces whose powers are useless or so small it barely can make a difference. Such as someone with telekinesis but can only lift a penny. Ace who can turn gasoline into jelly. Ace who can levitate three inches.
Jokers are those considered deformed mutates whom they can't go into public without being noticed. They have physical deformities, and sometimes can lead into problems with themselves. This can range from tentacles as nose to excreting a smelly oder. Or having fat grow uncontrollably in your legs and waist. A lot of Jokers stay in New York, which became to be known as Jokertown. Here all kinds of Jokers stay, and live.
Wild Card Virus
The Wild Card Virus is also known as Xenovirus Takis-A. The virus is an artificially-created organism developed by the alien race called the Takisians whose purpose was to enhance their own psionic powers. The aliens decided to field-test the virus on Earth. It was released over New York City in 1946 and changed the course of human history forever. The virus is extremely deadly, killing 90% of the infected. The remaining 10% are transformed in spectacular ways. Most become Jokers, hideously deformed monsters. A few lucky survivors become Aces, superhumans gifted with amazing powers.
These are the novels of the Wild Cards series written by the author, George R. R. Martin himself. The Wild Cards anthology books are comprised of separate stories which chronicles the lives of Aces, Deuces, and Jokers.
Wild Cards series
1. Wild Cards
In the 1940s, an alien virus got unleashed through the Earth's atmosphere. 30 years later, the victims of the gene-altering "Wild Cards" virus faces a new nightmare. From the far reaches of space comes the Swarm, a deadly menace that could destroy the planet.
2. Aces High
The alien wild card virus has left a legacy on Earth in the form of powerful Aces and deformed Jokers. In 1986, a fact-finding commission of Aces, Jokers, and Naturals tours the world in search of other victims of the disease that altered humanity.
3. Jokers Wild
The action of Jokers Wild takes place on September 15, 1986, the fortieth anniversary of the release of Xenovirus Takis-A, the so-called "Wild Card Virus". The anniversary of this event is observed as Wild Card Day and celebrated or cursed depending upon each individual victim's reaction to the virus.
4. Aces Abroad
The book was published in 1988 and dealt with a world tour, sponsored by the United Nations and the World Health Organization featuring many of the main characters from the previous novels and introducing new ones.
5. Down and Dirty
The stories in this volume tell of the events in New York City involving two outbreaks; the outbreak of a gang war between the Mafia and the Shadow Fists gangs controlled by Klen Phuc, and a war which soon spills out of control into the streets of New York.
6. Ace in the Hole
The plot of Ace in the Hole centers on the 1988 Democratic Convention held in Atlanta, Georgia. Following many years of inadequate recognition and inaction, the plight of the unfortunate victims of the Wild Card virus, the Jokers, now forms a large part of the Democratic campaign.
7. Dead Man's Hand
The story happens simultaneously as the Democratic National Conventions, the events of which were detailed in the previous novel, Ace in the Hole In this book we are treated to a murder mystery in stereo. Both Jay Ackroyd and the Yeoman are trying to track down Chrysalis' murderer.
8. One-Eyed Jacks
This book is the first of the Jumper triad, and contains multiple stories about the rise to prominence of the Jumpers, the Bloat, and governor of the Rox. The main narrative of the story follows Jerry Strauss as he tries to deal with his affection for his brother's wife.
9. Jokertown Shuffle
Jokertown Shuffle directly follows the events of One-Eyed Jacks, but concentrates more on the Jokers' point of view as Bloat consolidates his hold on the Rox and his relationship with the Jumpers. His stories, The Temptation of Hieronymous Bloat Parts I-XI make up the bulk of this book, tracing his evolution from tenuous leader of a growing resistance against the Nats to an operation that brings money, food and safety to the Jokers under his care.
10. Double Solitaire
Blaise steals Tachyon’s sentient starship and leaves for Takis. Dr. Tachyon, Jay Ackroyd and Mark Meadows make a deal with the treacherous Network to travel to the Takisian home planet in an effort to catch Blaise and make him reverse the body switch he performed on Kelly Ann Jenkins and Tachyon in Jokertown Shuffle.
11. Dealer's Choice
The powers that be decide to enlist Aces to attack Ellis Island and get rid of Bloat and his Joker army. The great and powerful Turtle is part of the main attack team that first tries to negotiate with Bloat before open fighting begins. Unknown to him, Carnifex is leading a underground team to the Rox to kill the Bloat during the ‘distraction’.
12. Turn of the Cards
After coming back to Earth from his adventures on Takis , Mark Meadows finds himself on the run. As America's Most Wanted Drug Pusher, Mark is pursued by two violent agents, the government Ace Mistral and a mysterious character named Randall Bullock.
Wild Cards Mosaic: New Cycle series
13. Card Sharks
A fire in Jokertown destroys the church killing and injuring hundreds of Jokers. Nat arson investigator Hannah Davis looks into the matter and with the guidance of a sometimes addled Quasiman, she begins to investigate the shady outlines of a secret conspiracy against Wild Carders.
14. Marked Cards
Gregg Hartmann and Hannah try to expose the group and get the word out to the general public, while the Card Sharks machinations continue to roll onward toward the conclusion of their unifying goal, the eradication of Wild Carders in the world.
15. Black Trump
Finally flushed into the open by the heroism of a Joker and an uninfected lady reporter, the Card Shark conspiracy faces destruction. But a cornered animal is a dangerous animal, and the Sharks still have one final card to play, the Black Trump.
Original Wild Card series
16. Deuces Down
This is an anthology of unrelated stories spanning four decades. The book focuses on Deuces- the 'almost-Aces' with negligible powers that are often more trouble than they're worth.
17. Death Draws Five
The events take place circa 2005 over the course of a week or so and concern two religious fundamentalist groups convinced that the Last Days have arrived and that John Fortune (son of Peregrine and Fortunato is the key player in the coming 'apocalypse'). While ex-president, Leo Barnett's Millenarians see him as a saviour, the Vatican takes a somewhat less benevolent stance regarding the boy's true nature. Both groups seek to gain the upper hand in the coming conflict by gaining control of John.
18. Inside Straight
Twenty-eight extraordinary Aces sign onto a reality TV show. These young heroes have never really been heroic, but each has a superhuman skill. They all initially belong to one of four suits while competing in staged contests as only LA-LA land could dream up with the losers being voted off the show until the greatest American Hero is left standing.
19. Busted Flush
At the United Nations, veteran Ace John Fortune has assembled a team of young Aces known as the Committee, to assist at trouble spots around the world including a genocidal war in the Niger Delta, an invasion of zombies in hurricane ravaged New Orleans, and a freak nuclear explosion in a small Texas town.
20. Suicide Kings
Ranging from New York and New England to ravaged Africa and New Orleans, encompassing war, devastation, and stubborn hope, Suicide Kings advances the story of the Wild Cards, and their struggle to be fully human in a world that fears and mistrusts them.
21. Fort Freak
In Manhattan's Fifth Precinct or 'Fort Freak,' the cops and malefactors alike call the cop-shop where every other desk sergeant, detective, and patrol officer is more than human.
Epic Comics four issue mini series, later collected as a graphic novel. When a bomber targets Jetboy's Tomb, Dr. Tachyon calls on Jay Ackroyd to solve the case.
Anthology title which carried a Wild Cards short story in each of its four issues.
Wild Cards: The Hard Call
Dynamite six issue miniseries. In 1946, an alien virus is accidentally unleashed that changes the world forever. Most of those infected die horribly, said to have drawn the Black Queen as their fated card. Ninety percent of those who survive mutate into Jokers - deformed, broken, hated, and feared. But a handful are lucky enough to become Aces, gaining superpowers that allow them to achieve almost anything the mind can conceive - both in dreams and in nightmares. Sixty years later, an Ace named Croyd Crenson, better known as the Sleeper, is framed for the murder of a young nurse in New York City's Jokertown. As Crenson investigates the killing to clear his name, he has to fight to stay awake, or else his unusual ability will change him into something else entirely. Meanwhile, a group of teenagers in Whiteoak, Colorado, accidentally activate the dormant wild-card virus, wiping out nearly the entire town. As the teens are sent to the Jokertown clinic, they discover that not all Jokers are bad and not all Aces are good.