The First Stage was the name given to the Orion effort to rebuild and re-ecologize Botchok (Rigel VIII) after the devastation wrought by the Atom War and the Long Winter.

The races that were the masters of the Orion slaves left the planet to suffer its fate in the immediate aftermath of the Atom War, but at the 22nd Rigel Conference in 12,189 BCE (reference stardate -141/8901), the Treaty of Kammzdast was modified to permit Orions from offworld to be imported to the planet to shore up its depleted population, replacing the 80% who had died due to radiation sickness or hunger. The forcibly resettled Orions had to clean up and rebuilt. The Book of Tears was a compilation of accounts from both native and offworld Orions at the time, telling of the carnage and the outrage they felt about what had happened.

The work was slow, however, and not helped by the battles constantly being fought on the planet, and the masters of the Orions did not give enough resources or attention to the reconstruction. Millennia later, Botchok still had not fully recovered, and the Orions calculated that the planet's ecology would fail in another thousand years if nothing was done about it. In 9143 BCE (stardate -111/43), representatives from a dozen nations on Botchok gathered to draft the Accord of Namazz, a plan for reconstructing the planet entirely using Orion resources: money, labor, technology. This was approved at the 59th Rigel Conference and put into practice.

Though a minor point to the master races, it was of great significance in Orion history: it marked the first time that the Orions had been accorded any sort of independent public responsibility or authority over their own people, all in an effort to save their homeworld. It was a key occurrence in the lead-up to their eventual freedom. (FASA RPG module: The Orions: Book of Common Knowledge) Grey Orions carried out much of the planning and scientific work, and as a result rose to positions of high power in Botchok's businesses and governments. (FASA RPG module: The Orions: Book of Deep Knowledge)

The First Stage was completed in 7730 BCE (stardate -97/30); its name referred to the fact that later efforts were made. The terraforming was not a quality effort, and records of the project were fragmented. The rebuilt ecology of Botchok was not entirely successful, as the planet's terraforming required continual re-adjustment into modern times, but the planet was almost entirely recovered. Orions subsequently gained a reputation for terraforming; the Pergue imported them to Syrenya to repeat their successes. (FASA RPG module: The Orions: Book of Common Knowledge)

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