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The Imp is a unique creature type featured in Dungeon Keeper, Dungeon Keeper 2, Dungeon Keeper Online, and Dungeon Keeper Mobile. Unlike regular creatures, Imps are not attracted to your dungeon through conventional methods and don't require sleep, food, or payment. They serve as your dungeon's most important and dedicated workers, handling all the mundane tasks such as digging tiles and dragging objects. These tasks are crucial for the smooth operation of your dungeon, and Imps tirelessly carry them out, only stopping when there is nothing left to do. They only pause when there are no tasks left for them to do. Imps are the backbone of your dungeon, essentially its life force, as the dungeon cannot function properly without their diligent efforts.

In Dungeon Keeper 2, they require mana for sustenance.

Dungeon Keeper[]

Imp portrait Dungeon Keeper no border


Digging dk1 anim

Imps digging out a room.

In many ways, the Imp is the most important creature a Keeper has in his disposal. Along with hero Tunnellers, Imps are the only creatures that can expand and maintain a dungeon, including digging, claiming land, installing traps, moving dead or unconscious bodies, etc. They do these tasks free of charge, and their labour is never interrupted by fatigue or hunger. Despite them having no qualms about toiling forever more, there is a limit to the number of tasks they can be assigned to at any one time: 300. Each tile marked for digging counts as one task.

Dungeon Keeper Imp smoking

An Imp smoking during a break

An Imp's happiness rating never gets lower. They aren't even able to sleep or eat food to restore health, even enemy Imps in Prison, but they also don't lose health due to starvation. When there are absolutely no jobs available (or they are stuck somewhere), Imps often smoke to restore health they are injured; otherwise, they will obambulate until there is work to be done. It is possible to convert enemy Imps in the Torture Chamber, but not possible to torture one's own Imps in it.

Dungeon Keeper Imp movement animation

Ingame animation

They do not fight, except the occasional scuffle with enemy Imps, and instead almost always run from battle. However, should the Dungeon Heart be threatened, Imps will defend it to the death.

Imps are created with the Create Imp spell. Most levels start the game with at least a few Imps under the player's control. They don't gain experience from performing jobs, but they can gain experience in the Training Room. However, this still costs gold, as it does for every other creature. As Imps do not require sleep, food, or pay, they keep training and do not return to their usual drudgery until either you reassign them, you run out of gold, or they reach level 10. At level 3, they gain Speed, making them much more useful. In this fashion, it may cost less money in the long run in some instances to train Imps rather than to spawn more. Their Teleport ability at level 10 is powerful, but training Imps to level 10 is (under most circumstances) extremely time-consuming.

Provided that the player has nimble hands, possessing an Imp can greatly improve its performance. Possessed Imps claim land much more rapidly (they only need to use Dig once on an unclaimed patch to do so), and can also dig much more rapidly; however, there is no way to reinforce walls, lay traps, or drag creatures while possessing an Imp (these are possible in KeeperFX 0.4.9).

If a Keeper's Dungeon Heart is destroyed, all his Imps die immediately. 


Combat Statistics
Query Speed icon Dungeon Keeper Speed: 96
Heal Icon Small Base Health: 75
Strength Base Strength: 5
Defence Defence: 5
Skill Base Skill: 5
Dexterity Base Dexterity: 60
Luck Luck: 0
Tasks & Management
Imp-icon Primary Job Dig
Library Icon Small Base Research Skill none
Workshop Icon Small Base Manufacturing Skill none
Training Room Icon Small Training Skill 1
Wage Training Cost /64t 10
ScavengerRoom Icon Small Base Scavenging Skill none
Wage Scavenging Cost /64t n/a
Temple Icon Small Praying Anger n/a
Lair Icon Small Sleeping Anger n/a
Heal Icon Small Sleep Recovery n/a
Hatchery Icon Small Hunger never
Wage Base Wage none


  • Before the major revamp in 1996, Imps were magical creatures and appear to have cost 30 mana each to summon.
  • Imps can be diseased directly, and they can spread it to, but not catch it from, other creatures.
  • In the Japanese version, your Imps seem to address you directly by exclaiming '一寸 (ちょっと) () っていれ!' (which means, roughly, wait a moment) if they're overworked (that is, you've reached the task limit) and you try to give them yet more work. In other languages, including English, what happens is that the Mentor simply tells you that you can't give them any more work.
  • Imps require more than double the usual quantity of experience required to reach level 2 (2500 points, compared to the 1000 points for every other creature), but the same as other creatures afterwards.
  • The manual falsely says that Imps learn Invisibility and Flight at higher levels.[2]
  • As of KeeperFX 0.4.8, the game, or specific campaigns, can be configured so that Imps gain experience and level up from working, like they do in Dungeon Keeper 2. This is a setting in the rules.cfg file. From KeeperFX 0.4.9, it is no longer possible to create Vampires using Imp corpses.


Dungeon Keeper 2[]

Imps working art Dungeon Keeper 2

Concept Art of Imps working

Like the first game, Imps will happily toil away at the donkey work: digging into walls, collecting gold and gems, claiming land, reinforcing walls, arming traps or doors, and dragging bodies to a Lair or Graveyard. They have no need for food or sleep, and never flag or become unhappy; they are sustained solely by mana. They are extremely weak in battle, and only fight enemy Imps or in a last-ditch effort to protect their master's Dungeon Heart. Imps are created by the Create Imp spell; there is no other way to obtain them, though your Dungeon Heart will automatically produce some if you have fewer than four. They are your dungeon's primary workforce; without them, your dungeon cannot function.

Imp Experience[]

Dungeon Keeper 2 Imp panel icon

The Imp panel icon

Imps gain experience from performing their labours. At level 4, they gain Haste Self, and at level 8, they will become extremely fast due to the Teleport skill. The easiest way to increase your Imps' experience is to let them reinforce your walls. If there is no wall to reinforce, break them down with your Tremor spell and your Imps will start over again.

Note: Many enemy Keepers will target Imps knowing that, collectively, they are the engine house of your operation. Placing tougher creatures in nearby guard rooms can safeguard your dungeon against an Imp slaughter.


  • The more Imps you have, the less mana you receive each second. Each Imp costs you 7 mana per turn.
  • They thrive on mana. When standing on their own Keeper's land, they heal quickly.
  • When a Dungeon Heart is destroyed, Imps will not heal themselves.
  • If your mana is low, your Imps will disappear.
  • At 2am, the Mentor will jokingly state that your Imps are about to lock your dungeon up.


Dungeon Keeper Online[]

Ambox important orange
'Your Library is too small!' - The Mentor (DK1)
This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it.
Imps working Dungeon Keeper Online

In Dungeon Keeper Online, Imps performed dungeon labours, like in previous instalments. In the overworld, they served Keepers with provisions.[3]

Dungeon Keeper Mobile[]

Imp icon Dungeon Keeper Mobile


[1]by Gene_Mythic » Fri Sep 13, 2013 12:37 pm

The Imp is (almost quite literally) the essential building block of your dungeon: they are used to perform tunneling jobs, clearing the way for travel and/or the building of rooms, traps, bolstering etc. Once you’ve decided to build or upgrade, your imps will faithfully carry out those orders. And if they aren’t working quite as quickly as you’d like, you may… “motivate” them by slapping your imps to increase their efficiency. While only one Imp can be used on any one build/dig/upgrade project, having multiple Imps in play will allow for multiple projects to be worked on at once.


  • Imps are required to remove blocks but not to place them
  • Imps are not present when defending or attacking


  • Imps can be used to bolster buildings providing you with benefits for the cost of gold
  • The benefit amount is dependant on the buildings level*
  • The higher the level of building, the higher the cost, even if the benefit doesn’t improve
  • When an imps is bolstering, he cannot be used for other tasks
  • If you have an imp bolstering and attempt an action when you have no imps available, it will ask you if you wish to use gems to complete the building that has the shortest time to complete rather than using the imp that is bolstering.
  • Bolstering training rooms or guard posts will add the guild perks to it as well
  • For buildings such as hatcheries, gold mines, and quarries, the benefit is only as good as the lowest level building. Bolstering the lowest level one will provide the same benefit and cost less

See Bolstering for a complete list

Imp Cost[]

1st Free Free
2nd 200 120
3rd 800 480
4th 1,200 720
5th 2,100 1,260
6th 4,200 2,520

Slap Boosting Time[]

Imps Boost Time Guild Perk
Level 1 - 2%
Guild Perk
Level 2 - 5%
Guild Perk
Level 3 - 10%
Guild Perk
Level 4 - 20%
Guild Perk
Level 5 - 25%
1 Imp 15m
2 Imps 1h 1h 3m 1h 6m 1h 12m 1h 18m
3 Imps 2h 2h 6m 2h 12m 2h 24m
4 Imps 4h 4h 12m 4h 24m 4h 48m
5 Imps 8h 8h 24m 8h 48m 9h 36m
6 Imps 16h 16h 48m 17h 36m 20h


  • It would take 96 days (without the slap boost) for a single imp to dig out the entire outer ring of Hard Gem Vein connecting all of the Quarries and Gold Mines.
  • Slapping any one imp will boost all of the imps.


  1. 地下城守护者地下城生物之魔族生物大全 (Chinese). dk.178.com (31 March 2012). Retrieved on 20 April 2020.
  2. Dungeon Keeper Gold manual. p. 53.
  3. 小鬼简介 (Chinese). games.qq.com. Retrieved on 1 April 2023.