With fellow strugglers Wigan Athletic and Aston Villa playing each other on the final day of the season, a win was required to give either side a chance of a miraculous escape.
However, the match perfectly summed up why Reading and QPR have been toiling this season as clear-cut chances were few and far between, and there was an apparent lack of urgency to grab a winner.
Reading started quite brightly, but it was QPR who came closest to scoring in the early exchanges when Esteban Granero's curling 12th minute free-kick clipped the crossbar.
QPR created the next opportunity on 20 minutes when Stephane M'bia's pass sent Jay Bothroyd clear and he lobbed his shot over the advancing Alex McCarthy only to see the ball bounce the wrong side of the upright.
Adel Taarabt side-footed wide from the edge of the area for QPR before Reading failed to apply a finishing touch to a goalmouth scramble on 38 minutes when Pavel Pogrebnyak was twice unable to force the ball past Rob Green.
Reading had seen an earlier shout for a penalty waved away when Garath McCleary's cross hit M'bia's hand and there were two more calls for a spot-kick before half-time when Nick Blackman tumbled to the ground and Stephen Kelly appeared to be tripped by Jose Bosingwa.
The majority of QPR's chances appeared to fall to Taarabt and he had a couple of sights of goal early in the second half. The Moroccan mis-hit his volley after linking well with Loic Remy before side-footing wide again from a good position.
Reading responded through Pogrebnyak, who curled just wide after cutting inside the penalty area and then headed the ball down over the bar.
Bothroyd then did well to cut the ball back for Jermaine Jenas, but his attempt swerved away from goal and at the opposite end Reading substitute Adam Le Fondre headed off target when stretching to reach a deep cross.
The Royals forced a flurry of corners late on and Sean Morrison's header was tipped over by Green before Bothroyd forced a low save from McCarthy.
Even with time running out, there appeared no real spark or impetus, with Reading and QPR both seemingly resigned to their fate long before today's fixture.