The Black imp in Ōkami is first encountered in the Calcified Caverns of the Moon Cave. It, like other demons of the Fallen Demons type, is a monkey-like creature with humanoid hands and hand-like feet. However, what sets this incarnation from other imps is that it is of a completely black color. Most of its flesh is exposed, revealing a hide covered in a thick layer of black hair. The Black imp wears a tattered shogun robe in black, its sleeves quite long and often flutters. Unlike all other imps, however, the Black imp does not have a mask depicted with a kana unique to the demon; instead, it bears the katakana ホ (ho) directly on its face, which has two devious fangs protruding from the sides of its mouth, and a horn on its forehead. Also, the Black imp carries a small drum that it struck to summon human skulls of its victims.
In Ōkamiden, the Black imp has a completely different depiction. It is now a scarecrow-like creature that wears a black hakama with a crimson rope tied to its waist, a portion of its upper body wrapped in a layer of white cloth, and torn sleeves sewn onto its arms by crimson threads. Its face bears a mask made of black paper having two parallel horizontal red lines and a vertical red line connecting the other two lines, and the demon also has a hat made of folded paper. What that is most noticeable of the Black imp however, is that its body is segmented into pieces and its head is only floating at where it should be, giving the demon an elongated appearance. The pieces can be thrown, and each has a sentience of its own. On each of the Black imp's hands are two wooden mallets held in a reversed grip that are able to generate small waves of darkness as a mean of offense.
The Black imp is considered to be the most fearsome type of imp, with a cruel and evil nature recorded in folklore and stories, and the floating skulls it controls are testament to this, said to be from their very victims. Any who carelessly draws the visage of this demon are said to bring doom to their household. When a Black imp is encountered, one is advised to "slash" down the skulls with a brush even before viewing. If without a brush, then one can trace a finger through as if drawing a slash through them.
The Black imp is a fury-filled demon, and this hatred fuels the very parts of this evil being. Even when being dismembered into pieces can the rage not be dampened, as it could only be magnified. Each of the pieces of the Black imp's body has a conscious and independent mind once split apart, and only when the parts are united can the demon be defeated.
"Regarded as the most fearsome Imp, tales abound of their evil nature.
The skulls they manipulate are said to be those of human victims.
The act of drawing them is thought to bring doom on one's house.
Exorcising the skulls with the brush before viewing is advised.
If you have no brush, use a finger to draw a slash through them."
"Even being rent asunder cannot dampen the fury that fuels this demon.
That fury can only be magnified, and it fuels each and every body part.
When his body is split up, each piece acts with a will of its own.
Some say only when he is whole can he be truly destroyed."
A Black imp is surrounded by floating skulls which will fire laser at Amaterasu; it will also protect itself with those heads. It is advised to Power Slash the floating heads so that it will be left defenseless and therefore easy to farm and kill. However, make sure that Amaterasu stays clear of the head when she Power Slashes them, as the heads explode when they are destroyed. After clearing the heads, the demon will be stunned, so use this chance to farm it by using Golden Fury on it. Later, when the Thief's Glove is obtained, it can also be used (the hidden strike glitch is advised). Then usually the demon will attempt to kick Amaterasu. Execute a Sub-Reflector Counterattack to quickly kill it. If the Black imp does not use the kick but jumps away instead, then scribble over it with the Celestial Brush to prompt it to flail its arms in a blind attack, then execute a Sub-Reflector Counterattack to kill it. When the demon is killed, use Power Slash as its Floral Finisher.
The Black imp, when it emerges will not attack Chibiterasu immediately, but instead float for a while before approaching him, swinging its mallets to send out two waves of darkness. Run from these waves while charging up a Glaive or the Providence Crystal (recommended for their heavy hits), and when the demon has finished attacking, approach it and unleash as many attacks as possible. If Chibiterasu is using the Providence Crystal, then wait for lightning to be charged, then fire at the Black imp; repeat this a few time and the demon is killed. If the Black imp throws parts of its body at Chibiterasu, then use Power Slash to deflect them and stun the demon, but if the head is what that pursues him, then use Magnetism to draw it back to the body, stunning it. When the Black imp is killed, use Magnetism as its Purification.
- Its Ōkamiden variant, much like the rest of its lesser brethren, utilizes a toy of some sort. In this case, the Black imp represents a toy itself, being a daruma otoshi, in where mallets are used to knock down a tower of wood blocks while leaving the top daruma intact. Symbolically, the Black imp itself refers to Ōkami's reoccurring element of how great demonic forces of evil are needed to be repelled to their ultimate source, and it is only then by striking at its core can evil can be truly vanquished from the world.