I think it was a single player Fantasy RPG magazine that gave you a story for you to work through and the first issue included a map of the world. Later issues gave you cards of monsters and such that would eventually turn out to be a sort of top trumps game.
I think this may be The Ancestral Trail.
I didn't remember it having any RPG elements, but Wikipedia states:
"Within the inside flap back cover of each issue, as well as aerial fragments of a graphic map, enabling the reader to create an illustrated layout of the Ancestral World. Information cards were printed in each issue which outline the real world legends that the series' antagonists were based upon. These cards were replaced by 'Techscan Cards', which told the reader about various scientific principles and theories. Role-playing games based on the content were generated from both free trump card sets bundled with each issue and later printed within the inside cover."
2This is it! I always thought it had an RPG element to it, no wonder I couldn't find it. Thank you! Mar 14, 2022 at 13:26
The first sentence of the quote makes no sense at all. It seems that the editor of the wiki page didn't bother to reread his work.– FreeManMar 14, 2022 at 15:47
@FreeMan I've looked at that article's edit history. It looks like that sentence started out as "Role-playing games based on the content were published within the inside back cover of each issue, as well as fragments of an atlas, enabling the reader to create a map of the Ancestral World.". That did make sense, but a future edit by that very same editor garbled it. Mar 14, 2022 at 20:59
This could be Warlock Magazine (wiki) / web archive as a complement to the existing Fighting Fantasy books
A little older as it was 1984-1986.
A story each issue
Each issue contained a unique adventure (early issues were rehashes or partials of existing / about to be released books)
First issue included a map of "Allansia" where many of the previous Fighting Fantasy books were set.
Cards of monsters
Each (didn't check them all) issue contains an "Out of the Pit" section which was more of a monster manual than top-trumps.
4Sadly it wasn't this however I will be checking it out as it sounds great. Thank you anyway. Mar 14, 2022 at 13:25