Any benefits/drawbacks to using this over mysqli or pdo?
I think your confusion is over what it is. It’s just a NoSQL implementation, which means no scheme; no risk of sql injection; no predefined normalization. It’s just like MongoDB or a slew of other things, so the driver itself is irrelevant.
I use NoSQL when there is an actual need. I know people that use them for everything, but there are more use cases when relational is the proper structure and there are times when the data is just too sporadic to warrant a relational data store. It’s just another tool that you should be aware of for use later.
It is actually able to work with relational tables as well.
I typically use Eloquent or Idiorm for very small personal projects to avoid having to write any SQL and I’m wondering if I should just use this instead.