One of the key things (there are many) that seems to help define a Major House from a Minor is that they have House Atomics.
These are last ditch weaponry as to use them against an enemy would call down the great convention against the aggressor.
Paul split hairs at the end of the first book by claiming they weren’t used against an enemy, but against a natural feature (the shield wall).
So my question here is where do the Houses get them from?
There seems to be some non-military uses with things like stone burners from Dune Messiah, which I see as a form of mining tool?
Does this mean that there is a nuclear industry out there that can be tapped to acquire Atomics. Are they carefully maintained heirlooms passed down the generations.
Is the acquisition of Atomics a key element of becoming a Major House or are they things you acquire because you have become a Major House?
What are peoples thoughts?
I’m mulling a plotline for my players which has them attempting to acquire some of the Atomics from a defeated Major House which is why I am thinking about this.