Gamedev is hard. It is even much harder when you decide to do it as a solo developer. It is close to impossible if you also have to provide for your family. How can you stay productive when the world doesn't want you to finish your game?
One of the popular methods for creating websites, web applications and even web multiplayer games today are REST APIs. This technique allows for decoupling of a client application from the server.
Laravel is the most popular PHP framework for building web applications. It provides simple solutions for common problems, like secure database querying, routing, console commands, ORM or input validation. It is a very solid choice if you wish to follow test-driven development process.
PHP is not known to be a demon of speed and it can sometimes happen that programmers do not account for how successful a web application can quickly become.