One of the main objectives of the game is to raise all four of the pillars present in the world, with one in each main area. They can also unlock areas within the World, including the soccer game to the south of the town and several Gearbits hiding within the city. They also serve as a pacing mechanism, requiring the player to beat the northern, eastern, and western zones before being able to approach the southern zone.
Once all of the Pillars are raised, the elevator to the Abyss is unlocked.
Northern Pillar (Mountains)
The northern pillar is located behind a blocked-off wall at the very top of the mountain. It is visible from the player's vantage point before defeating The Heirophant. It can be accessed by exiting The Heirophant's chamber.
Eastern Pillar (Lake)
The eastern pillar is located directly above The Emperor's chamber. Defeat The Emperor to gain access.
Southern Pillar (Barren Hills)
The southern pillar can be accessed after defeating all of the minibosses (The Summoner, The Sorcerer, and The Reaper) and after defeating the main boss, The Archer. It is visible behind a staircase just north of the underground area on the right side of The Barren Hills. It can be activated after ascending from the underground area.
Western Pillar (Crystal Forest)
The western pillar is located directly above the chamber where the player fights The Hanged Man. Beat the boss to gain access.
The music track Wisdom's Tragedy plays whenever a Pillar is activated.