Safety Animation Questions

We are looking to make a submission for this contest but I’m curious–would something like a flip book animation be acceptable or does it need to be a legit cartoon style animation? If the answer is it needs to be a legit cartoon style animation–can anyone recommend any software we could use to help make it? Thanks!

Animations must:

Be no more than 40 seconds long, including opening and credits
Be submitted electronically as .AVI, .MPEG, .MP4, or .WMV file
Be animated. Any kind of animation, including stop-motion, is allowed. Live video is allowed provided it is accompanied by virtual/augmented animated elements. Live video of people is not allowed.  
Please note that the team with the winning submission may be asked to reformat their video into a higher quality format, in order to be shown at FIRST Robotics Competition Events.