The String of Pearls method (also called "rivers and lakes") is a way of storytelling in games that involves a pre-scripted, linear story interrupted by periods of player freedom (Schell 265). The scripted pieces are often text or cut scenes. It gets its name from its structure: -->O-->O-->

Jesse Schell describes this method along with the story machine method in chapter 15 of The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses as one of the most common types of game story structures.