Yea, looks like it's only visual. Nothing changes with cheated levels
edit: 1 thing still changes, you can upgrade troops.
[Edited by Lukianenkov, 10/26/2014 2:23:10 PM]
its probably because those points unlock with research.. so without the research item that is supposed to give you the points, perhaps they don't do anything. the points options are merely so you can upgrade units early in the game instead of having to unlock research.