I printed a ton of R prints back in the day, and found the results really good, comparable to Ilfo/Cibachrome or RA4 of the day, at least if the original wasn't too contrasty. I printed some of what was then called Cibachrome too and found the results quite comparable. The Cibachrome had somewhat higher contrast (usually a drawback) and a bit more saturation (sometimes good, sometimes bad.) The glossy Ciba/Ilfochrome was very glossy, and very expensive, so I mostly confined myself to the RC Pearl surface. I eventually switched over to it from Type R when the price became more closely comparable and I had a bit more money, but more for the simpler processing and near-room-temperature (amendable to being used at room temperature) processing than for any superiority of results.
Where it WAS superior was the fade resistance of the dyes, at least in dark storage. It could fade badly if exposed to UV (sunglight in a window for example) and there were concerns about the base on the RC material though I still have a few of those printed in the 90s that are in good shape.
Bottom line was that I think Type R actually worked very well, it's just no longer available.