I decided to try to make a small game in Coffeescript. I wanted to carry over my tdd practices from my ruby work. However I was a bit unfamiliar with the coffeescript/node ecosystem. After a bunch of research this is what I’ve decided to use for now.
Grunt seems to be a great equivalent to rake. You install different tasks via npm packages. You need to create a package.json.
Then just install grunt via npm like so.
This will save the dependency to your package.json.
Grunt tasks are distributed as npm packages as well. I am using the grunt-contrib-coffee and grunt-contrib-watch tasks.
Then you can create this Gruntfile.coffee to use these tasks.
I use the watch task for compiling coffeescript whenever a .coffee file changes. I wasn’t sure I would like this workflow at first, but its not so bad. I just run the watch task in another tmux pane and inspect it whenever there is a compile error.
You can use mocha for testing. It can run scripts through a headless browser and has ‘should’ and ‘expect’ syntax.
There is a grunt task for running mocha tests. It doesn’t work with coffeescript by default unless you pass this
require: coffeescript option.
The coffee task that is called by the watch task concatenates all my coffeescript files into a single file, and provides a sourcemap for chrome to use. I was surprised the sourcemap worked right away, I didn’t need to change any settings in chrome.
Finally the grunt connect task starts an http server to test out my compiled js in the browser.
My setup will hopefully get a little more sophisticated as the need arises, but this should do fine for now.