The RAR, when it is offered in the same 'calibers' as the 77-slash, can be considered the Economy Alternative. The market seems to demand that. Ruger has simply lopped off the Quality Alternative.
Ruger hadn't actually produced the 77/22 Hornet for awhile. The 77/357 and 77/44 may have lost too much market to the relatively inexpensive lever-actions out there. I wanted the Hornet version but didn't have the $$ when one was available. I own a Browning B-92 in .44, so could resist the .44 Ruger. And... I am the happy owner of a 77/357; it's an excellent gun.