If you want to ZAP little critters out to 200yds or so the 204 Ruger should be fine. For shooting longer range you will find that the tiny 32gr bullets loose velocity very quickly and are rather wind sensitive.
From 200yd to 450yds the 22-250 or 220 Swift with 50-60gr bullets win hands down.
I might add, however, that I've killed groundhogs out to 350yds with my .221FB and a 40gr B-Tip,so its not impossible to stretch the practical limits of the 204 or any other cartridge. [img]images/icons/smile.gif[/img]
I have a Rem.VS 22-250 and a Rem.ADL 204, I would recommend that you get a 22-250 before you get a 204. Yes the 204 looks good on paper but the 22-250 is a tried and true cartridge. I love my 204 and I did make a 627yrd shot on a whistle pig, but if I had to give one up it would be the 204.slygunner
This is one of those theoretical discusions, on paper. A 220 Swift and a 204 Ruger are so different that you cannot crunch those numbers and prove your point. There is nothing new, under the sun. In this case, bigger is better, in every measurable aspect of performance. Terminally speaking.
You have wind to consider; and the various presentations. A 220 Swift is not a squirrel cartridge, and the Ruger (actually) is neither fish nor fowl. For me, at least, it is hard to define. I don't see it as a serious chambering for large predators; and this is where the Swift excells.
So, if it drops an inch more, or an inch less at 500 yards, that doesn't begin to tell the whole story. The original question mentions that the man is interested in a 22-250 or a 220 Swift, but the 204 "looks good, on paper".
That's about the only place it will compare to a Swift, IMHO.