SEOUL, May 10 (Yonhap) — NCSOFT Corp., a major South Korean online and mobile game developer, said Monday its net profit fell 59 percent in the first quarter from a year earlier due to increased costs.

Net profit stood at 80.2 billion won (US$71.5 million) during the January-March period, compared with 195.4 billion won a year earlier, NCSOFT said in a regulatory filing.

This undated photo, provided by NCSOFT Corp., a major South Korean online and mobile game developer, shows its headquarters, located south of Seoul. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap)

Sales fell 29.9 percent on-year to 512.5 billion won during the cited period, and operating income came to 56.7 billion won compared with 241.4 billion won a year ago.

Its increased spending on marketing and personnel expenses dragged down the bottom line for the cited period, according to NCSOFT.

NCSOFT said its marketing costs came to 55 billion won, up 23 percent from a quarter earlier, and personnel expenses came to 232.5 billion won, up 26 percent from a quarter earlier.

NCSOFT’s sales in South Korea came to 416.9 billion won in the period, and North America and Europe stood at a combined 24.1 billion won.

Sales of mobile games amounted to 324.9 billion won, with Lineage M taking 172.6 billion won and Lineage 2M at 152.2 billion won, NCSOFT said.