I am having a bit of a hard time with the level 20 avatar fights. Carbuncle keeps getting destroyed before I can get away from the avatar. So I was wondering can I use the Elementals to continue leveling past 20? Just until I get the others unlocked. Or will people even care if I don't have the other avatars before I would get their major party buffs (around mid 40s)?
SMN was the main reason I came back to this game, and it just frustrates me not being able to beat these lvl 20 fights. I have the method down... i just can't get carbuncle to survive. (Shiva being my hardest fight ever....)
The trick I used is as follows. Head towards the avatar with Carby out and let her aggro you naturally. Carby will leap to your defence and start attacking her, giving you ample time to distance yourself, enough to resummon but don't overdo it. You want to see Carby's damage so you can time your macros better.
Resummon and Carby will dash off and start wailing on her again. I recommend taking no direct action against the avatar until you've lowered her HP sufficiently, as I've had occasions where I couldn't shake the aggro for a while (and avatars hit hard!).
Once she's at about 50%, pop your Yagudo drink (if you haven't already) and unleash Astral Flow. Do NOT do this if Carby is low on HP and DO ensure you're close to the avatar in case the Blood Pact draws her attention. A few hits will be nothing in the time it takes Carby to steal aggro again with Searing Light.
Once Carby has the attention again, distance yourself because there's a good chance she's prepping her own Astral Flow attack. If you're hit with that, its as good as game over. Resummon Carby and let loose another Searing Light. If she's still alive at that point, she probably doesn't have much HP and one final Searing Light will finish the job.
The 20-cap battles are some of the most enjoyable fights in the game, in my experience, and well worth doing. Once you have a good tecnhique, the rest is all just timing. Some people use Astral Flow right from the start to attempt a 'Zerg' kill on the avatars. That works fine too, but should Astral Flow hit a resist on one of the casts, the avatar will still have a large portion of their HP remaining while you're on the last dregs of your MP.
Edit: Whoops, minor necrobump. Oh well, I think its still useful advice for anyone else attempting the primes. I'll be (re)doing them myself at some point in the near future. Edited, Jul 31st 2011 3:41am by Glitterhands